Joshua produced a superb performance against Pulev to start the second defence of his reign as world heavyweight champion in style.
The Briton dominated throughout at Wembley’s SSE Arena and a stunning combination finally saw off the valiant efforts of the challenger, who had been down three times before at the fourth time of asking could not make the count.
It means Joshua retained his WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO belts – and now looks likely to face Fury next year. A ‘Battle of Britain’ could sell out across the continent and plans for it to be hosted at Wembley will depend on how many fans are able to attend, with only 1,000 spectators inside the SSE Arena due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Joshua added: “Whoever has got the belt, I want the challenge. If that is Tyson Fury, let it be Tyson Fury.”
Matchroom’s Eddie Hearn said: “Starting from tomorrow let’s make this Tyson Fury fight happen.
“It is the only fight to make in boxing, it is the biggest fight in boxing and the biggest fight in British boxing. I know he wants it.”
As for Fury, he immediately responded to Joshua’s win by tweeting a video of himself in a Christmas jumper with the warning: “I want the fight, I want the fight next, I’ll knock him out inside three rounds.”
Take a look at the latest odds ahead of the potential fight courtesy of Betfair (odds subject to change)…
- Saudi Arabia: 10/11
- USA: 2/1
- UAE: 5/1
- UK: 10/1
- Diriyah Arena: 10/11
- Allegiant Stadium: 4/1
- T-Mobile Arena: 8/1
- MGM Arena: 12/1
- MSG: 14/1
- Wembley Stadium: 20/1
- Tottenham Hotspur Stadium: 25/1
- O2 Arena: 33/1
- Joshua to retire in 2021: 20/1
- Fury to retire in 2021: 5/1
- Joshua to fight more than once in 2021: 1/5
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Additional reporting by PA.