Daniel Dubois strengthens position to go face-to-face with Anthony Joshua


Daniel Dubois has strengthened his position as a challenger for Anthony Joshua’s WBO belt, with promoter Frank Warren eager to arrange a future world title fight.

The undefeated 22-year-old heavyweight stopped Ricardo Snijders in the second round on Saturday to defend his WBO international title, cementing his status as the No 3 challenger in the WBO rankings.

Oleksandr Usyk is the next WBO mandatory challenger for Joshua, who holds the WBO, IBF and WBA belts, but Dubois could soon have plenty of options with a number of governing bodies if he extends his 15-fight winning record.

“When you have a talent like Daniel, the individual route to a world title becomes less important,” Warren told Sky Sports.

“Before long, he’ll be at the top of all the sanctioning bodies’ rankings and everyone will be running scared from him. If it’s AJ’s WBO title, so be it.

“They’ve sparred before and Daniel held his own. I’ve said before, I’d make that fight tomorrow.”

Joshua is expected to make his next world title defence against IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev in December, while Usyk’s WBO title shot might have to be added to the 30-year-old’s schedule for 2021.

But the unified champion’s top priority is an undisputed world heavyweight title fight with WBC king Tyson Fury.

“There’s a potential date coming up, I’m looking to be out in December,” Joshua told Sky Sports. “I like to compete against the best.

“Pulev is a world title challenger as well. I’ve beaten five champions now and Pulev is another tough challenge, which leads me on to another challenge, which is a champion.

“God willing I get my hands on that Tyson Fury, [and his] WBC belt, so I’m just loving it, I can’t wait. This is what I live for, this is my passion. I feel like this is my calling.”