British heavyweight Dillian Whyte 28-2 (19) is petitioning the WBC for a shot at leading contender Deontay Wilder 42-1-1 (41) after the American’s world title challenge to full titleholder Tyson Fury 30-0-1 (21) was postponed due to a reported Covid-19 outbreak in the champion’s camp.
Wilder was awarded a third fight against Fury when an independent arbitrator ruled the undefeated Brit was contractually obliged to face him again following their fight in Las Vegas last year that saw Wilder knocked out in seven rounds.
That fight was a rematch of their December 2019 clash in Los Angeles that ended in a hotly disputed split draw.
Last week it was revealed their trilogy fight scheduled for Las Vegas on July 24 was off after a number of members of Fury’s camp reportedly tested positive for Covid-19.
Now WBC interim heavyweight champion Whyte wants to step in to fill the void, citing the Mexican sanctioning body’s own precedent.
“This is why they have the interim champion,” Whyte explained to Sky Sports.
“When stuff like this happens and fights fall through and the champion is injured or can’t fight, or for whatever reason can’t defend the title, then the interim champion steps up.
“That’s how Wilder became champion in the first place. Remember Vitali Klitschko wasn’t able to defend the title, because he was in the process of becoming a mayor, and they made him Emeritus champion and made the other belt for [Bermane] Stiverne to fight [Chris] Arreola and then Wilder for, so this is a similar kind of thing.
“Make me world champion, I’ll fight Wilder as a world champion, and the winner of that fights Tyson Fury, and the winner of that fights Anthony Joshua for the undisputed.
“That is where everything is solved with one action.”
WBA, WBO and IBF champion Joshua 24-1 (22) was expected to clash with Fury in a rare four-belt unification bout before the arbitrator ruled in favour of Wilder. He is now expected to face Ukrainian southpaw and WBO mandatory contender Oleksandr Usyk 18-0 (13) in October.
Whyte, 33, has long coveted a shot at the green belt currently in possession of Fury. He spent over 1,000 days as the number one contender before being upset by Russian veteran Alexander Povetkin 36-3-1 (25), losing by shock fifth-round knockout in August last year. He reversed the result in their immediate rematch in March to become the WBC interim titleholder by fourth-round knockout.
“The only way Wilder will fight me is if I’m world champion,” Whyte said. “If the WBC makes me world champion and orders Wilder to fight me, we can fight.
“I’ve always tried to be the solution since the start of my career. I’ll fight anyone. I don’t care about all this politics. All I want to do is fight.
“Tyson Fury has held all the titles but has never made a single defence of any of them. It’s a year and a half since he won the WBC belt and still no fight in sight. Just excuses. What the hell is going on? It’s a joke!
“The WBC should make Fury champion in recess like they did Devin Haney, give me the belt, put me in the position, and I’ll fight. I’ll fight all of these guys.
“I’ve fought and beaten more of the WBC top 15 than Fury and Wilder put together. They should [The WBC] one hundred percent do the right thing.
“There’s been a lot of inactivity with the title. This is the worst the WBC title has ever been. The WBC heavyweight title has been a mess for years now. There have only been five fights against three opponents in four years. It’s ridiculous!”