One of the biggest fights in modern boxing history appears to finally have a date and location. WBC champion Tyson Fury took to Twitter on Sunday where he confirmed the date as Saturday, Aug. 14 after weeks of talk and negotiations from both Fury promoter Bob Arum and Joshua promoter Eddie Hearn. Fury also revealed the fight will take place in Saudi Arabia, a popular rumored destination throughout the negotiations.
The pair signed a two-fight deal in March that kicked off a 30-day negotiating period to nail down the specifics as far as date and location. After weeks of Hearn — as well as Fury himself — suggesting the completion of the final details were imminent and periods where Arum and Fury claimed the fight was all but dead for a summer date, it was confirmed by Fury on Sunday that the final details had been hammered out with government in Saudi Arabia and the fight is officially set for August.
“Got some massive news for you all guys,” Fury said in the video. “I just got off the phone from Prince Khalid [bin Salman Al Saud] from Saudi Arabia. He told me the fight is 100% hung. Aug. 14, 2021, summertime. All eyes on the world will be on Saudi Arabia and I cannot wait — cannot wait — to smash Anthony Joshua on the biggest stage of all time. This is going to be the biggest sporting event ever to grace the planet Earth.”
On the heels of Fury’s announcement, Arum offered some clarification. The Top Rank boss told ESPN that the deal still was not completely done in the form of contracts being signed, but that the assurances from the Saudi government to Fury had created a sense of security in the fight happening.
“We still haven’t gotten the final contracts — we’re supposed to get a clean draft on Monday,” Arum said. “But Prince Khalid has assured Tyson that there will be no problems, and everybody who has dealt with Prince Khalid and his team know them to be men of their word.”
Fury is coming off an incredible performance in February 2020, knocking out Deontay Wilder to win the WBC heavyweight championship in a rematch of their 2018 draw. A third fight with Wilder was supposed to be next up for Fury, but the COVID-19 pandemic and several delays pushed the negotiations past the contractual breaking point and Fury moved on to negotiations for the unification bout.
Joshua lost the WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles in a shocking June 2019 upset loss to Andy Ruiz Jr.. The defeat was the first of his career. He would win the rematch that December to regain all three titles from Ruiz. After a successful title defense against Kubrat Pulev, Joshua was able to turn his attention to the fight with Fury and the chance for a rare claim to being undisputed world champion.