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26th Apr 2018

Anthony Joshua has been set a deadline to accept huge offer for next fight

He only has a few hours to make his mind up

Darragh Murphy

Talk about a statement of intent.

Deontay Wilder has responded to Anthony Joshua’s recent demand of $50 million for the heavyweight unification match-up by offering the Brit exactly what he wants.

A message from Wilder’s personal email account arrived in the inboxes of ‘AJ’, promoter Eddie Hearn and trainer Rob McCracken this week with an offer of a 50-50 purse split for the bout which would decide the first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis, with Joshua guaranteed to take home at least $50 million.

Wilder’s promoter Shelly Finkel has made no secret of the WBC title-holder’s desire to share the ring with Joshua next and confirmed the figures involved.

“We want [Joshua] to fight Deontay in his next fight and we offered him $50 million,” Finkel told Sky Sports.

“If he accepts it, it will be there. Al Haymon and I have never not delivered what we’ve offered.

“We were offered $12.5m (£8.8m) to fight him but we have offered four times that. If [Joshua] says he is not going to take $50m, it means he doesn’t really want to fight him next.

“It was $50m against 50 per cent. He said, ‘get me $50m against 50 per cent and I’ll take it the next day, I swear’.”

Joshua recently told JOE that he would push for the fight to take place on UK soil but the location involved with Wilder’s proposal remains unknown.

‘AJ’ has been given a deadline of midnight on Thursday night to accept the offer, however Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn has yet to be convinced that Wilder even has $50 million to put up for the meeting of the undefeated heavyweights.

“We got an email from Deontay Wilder’s personal email address offering us a 50-50 split with a guarantee of $50m,” Hearn told Sky Sports.

“He said that in an interview Anthony said, ‘give us £50m and we will sign tomorrow’. They have asked us to give them written acceptance of the deal by tomorrow.

“With all due respect to Deontay Wilder, I don’t believe he has $50m. However, if they actually send some formal paperwork and a contract along with further details on how this money will be secured, we will definitely have to take this seriously.

“We have a meeting on Friday, so let’s see how real this is.”