The rematch between Anthony Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk is expected to be confirmed soon as AJ looks to save his career.
Joshua was outclassed by Usyk at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on September 25, losing his world heavyweight titles on a hugely difficult night.
The Brit had hoped to secure a unification bout against the winner of Tyson Fury vs Deontay Wilder 3 but now the heavyweight division has been blow wide open again.
Usyk claimed the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, and IBO titles with a brilliant display in London but will now have to honour his obligation of facing Joshua again rather than go for more gold.
The rematch will have huge ramifications for the glittering division moving forward and Joshua will face a must win date with destiny.
He has been there before and overcame his shock loss to Andy Ruiz Jr in June 2019 with a top-class win in their rematch later that year.
While the second clash between Joshua and Usyk hasn’t been confirmed yet, plenty has been said about it already…
Joshua vs Usyk 2: When and where could it happen?
Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn has said the rematch will likely take place in February or March in 2022.
Hearn has also claimed it is ‘very likely’ that the fight will be held in the UK again.
He said: “AJ has got the chance in February or March of next year to become the unified world heavyweight champion.
“Forget that he lost it, that is the opportunity that has presented itself and that is a blessing. So we take that with both hands.”
Asked where the rematch could take place, Hearn added: “Very likely to happen in the UK, but we’ll sit down and look at the options.
“There will be approaches to do it elsewhere. But after [the first fight], the pluses and minuses, I mean, have you ever seen anything like that? How good was it? Have you ever seen anything like that?
“So I’d like to do it in England again. Maybe at Spurs, maybe at Wembley, maybe at the Emirates. They’ll be approaches to do it elsewhere but I don’t see any reason to take it outside of England.”
Usyk is looking forward to their rematch, his promoter Alexander Krassyuk has said.
“The rematch was written in our contract,” Krassyuk said. “When we were talking to Oleksandr about the rematch, he wasn’t upset. On the contrary, he was happy.
“He was glad and said: ‘Oh, cool! I will beat up Anthony twice!
“The approximate time that Eddie Hearn announced at the press conference after the fight, February-March, is indeed true.”
Joshua vs Usyk 2: What have the fighters said?
Joshua immediately called for a second shot at Usyk following his damaging defeat.
Asked if he wants the rematch next, AJ replied: “100 per cent, 110 per cent.
“I’m ready to get back to training. It was a good 12-rounder, so I’ll be in a good place when I get back into training to pick up where we left off.”
Asked if he was surprised by how good Usyk was, AJ said: “With all due respect, not necessarily. He’s just a lot lighter so the pace, he’s got a good pace.
“But he still gets hit, he gets hit a lot and in the rematch we’ll just learn how to hit him more and be more concussive with our punch selection.
“I’m just looking to go in there improved, stronger, smarter and I believe I’ll get a good win in the next fight because of what I learned this fight.
“I’m a quick learner and we’ll bounce back.”
Usyk, meanwhile, would love the rematch to be held in his home country of Ukraine.
He said: “This is the biggest fight in my career but it was not my hardest. I think that is in my future.
“I love challenges but we have a rematch clause in the contract with Anthony Joshua and we will honour that.
“I would love to have the rematch in the Olimpiyskiy Stadium in Kyiv.
“Anthony Joshua is our next opponent in our minds.”