BARRY HEARN admitted he is ‘doubtful’ Tyson Fury will ever fight Anthony Joshua, but urged the Gypsy King to ‘put up or shut up’.
Hearn’s son Eddie worked tirelessly to secure a historic first-ever, four-belt undisputed heavyweight title decider between the Brit superstars.
They had even agreed terms for a unification in Saudi Arabia on August 14, but it only came after Fury tried to walk away from facing Deontay Wilder.
Wilder took his right to a contracted trilogy bout with Fury to arbitration and at the 11th hour was awarded the verdict.
It meant the Battle of Britain was once again shelved, leaving Hearn fearing the fight will ever happen.
He told Betfred: “I’m doubtful. Eddie thinks it will, but then the money that was available last time didn’t do it.
“I really hope we do, maybe I’m just getting old and cynical but I really just don’t believe anybody anymore.
“I listen to a load of rubbish and I am getting to the age where I just don’t want to listen to it anymore.
“I want to say ‘put up or shut up’. Get in the ring, give the public what they want. I know AJ is 100 percent there, and wants to do it tomorrow.
“So let’s hope Tyson Fury comes through with the same thought process as well. Best of luck to him should he ever fight Deontay Wilder as well.”
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Joshua, 31, now instead fights mandatory challenger Oleksandr Usyk, 34, on September 25 having been ordered to do so by the WBO.
Fury, 32, was meant to face Wilder, 35, on July 24 but he was forced to withdraw after testing positive for coronavirus.
Their second rematch has been moved to October 9, and Hearn’s son Eddie claimed it could have been down to a lack of ticket sales.
But Fury’s UK promoter hit back and insisted there had already been £14million worth of tickets sold.
Hearn Sr, like Eddie, still remains unconvinced and said Fury is to blame for not fighting AJ.
He said: “There is no doubt about it.
‘KEEP OUR FINGERS CROSSED’
“If you have got any common sense, don’t listen to all this nonsense about ‘we’d sold £15m worth of tickets’ – you can check the inventory online.
“You don’t have to make up things like that. The British public are not idiots, they know. But listen, that is his decision and I respect his decision.
“We all want to see it so let’s hope, as the dust settles, they both have tough fights.
“Let’s keep our fingers crossed that they both come through and then let’s hope that common sense comes back into the equation and they give the fight fans of the world what we want.
“That is all we are asking for, it is not a lot to ask, there is hundreds of millions of pounds in it for the fighters, they are never going to want for anything in the rest of their life.
“All that fight fans want, myself included, is to watch the fight.”