Kubrat Pulev To Anthony Joshua: “You Either Fight Or Vacate The Title”

Kubrat Pulev's frustrations with Team Joshua continue

Kubrat Pulev (left), Anthony Joshua
Kubrat Pulev (left), Anthony Joshua

Kubrat Pulev’s frustrations with Team Joshua continue

For the IBF’s World Heavyweight mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev (28-1, 14 KOs), he feels like he is being given the run around by WBA/IBF/WBO World Heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (23-1, 21 KOs). The 39-year-old from Sofia, Bulgaria wants his shot at Joshua and he wants his shot right now.

Pulev was scheduled to face Joshua on June 20 at Tottenham Stadium in London, England. Unfortunately the bout was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since then, speculation and rumors about a unification showdown between Joshua and WBC World Heavyweight champion Tyson Fury have been running rampant. It’s gone to the point of Joshua’s promoter, Eddie Hearn, openly talking about the possibility of a Joshua – Fury showdown, with word of Pulev being offered step-aside money to make that fight happen.

The mandatory challenger has become visibly frustrated at the whole ordeal. And as Pulev explained to BBC, he already took step aside money from Team Joshua once. He refuses to do so for a second time.


“I did it once when I didn’t have to do it for Joshua to have his second match against Ruiz Jr. Everything was against IBF’s rules, but I compromised.

A year has passed and they always have a reason to postpone, not to fight against me. There are two options. You either fight or vacate the title.”

As far as the Bulgarian is concerned, he believes that Joshua doesn’t want to fight him and is accusing the champ of acting in an unprofessional manner.

“I can’t understand why we are still postponing instead of fixing a date and venue and getting to work. Enough is enough. I can’t wait to win this fight.

I see how people are afraid of me and are trying to face someone else before me. That’s not how a real world champion should act.”

One can understand why Pulev is angry. He was originally supposed to face Joshua in 2017, but had to pull out due to injury and has been the IBF’s heavyweight challenger for over a year.

Pulev’s camp believes they have been more than accommodating, including making an offer to stage a Joshua – Pulev bout in Croatia for health concerns due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, as of right now, the bout has not been finalized.

Pulev will more than likely get his opportunity to trade leather with Joshua at the end of the day. At this point, it’s a question of when and where. For the Bulgarian, he’s tired of the red tape and wants what he feels he has earned and deserves.

By: Michael Wilson Jr.

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About Michael Wilson 845 Articles
Michael is the host of boxing podcast "Pound 4 Pound Boxing Report" and is a writer/contributor for 3kingsboxing.com.