Anthony Joshua versus Tyson Fury predictably heads our list of the most anticipated boxing bouts of 2021, with the proposed heavyweight unification match set to break box office records.
However, that isn’t the only clash fight fans would love to see this year and we’ve got five eagerly-awaited showdowns to whet the appetite of followers of the noble art.
Anthony Joshua vs Tyson Fury
Everything is set up for one of these fighters to become the first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis in 1999. After avenging his only loss by comfortably outpointing Andy Ruiz, Joshua retained his WBA, IBF and WBO belts with an impressive pummelling of Kubrat Pulev. Fury holds the WBC title following a crushing victory in his second clash with Deontay Wilder and a battle of Britain’s big men would create a worldwide buzz.
Errol Spence vs Terence Crawford
Spence has rattled off 27 straight wins in the paid ranks, picking up the IBF and WBC welterweight titles with high-profile victories over Kell Brook, Lamont Peterson, Mikey Garcia, Shawn Porter and Danny Garcia. Crawford’s pro record reads 37-0 and he became a three-weight world champion when beating Jeff Horn to land the WBO belt at 147lbs. Bud has since knocked out Amir Khan and Brook, earning a place alongside Spence in the upper echelons of the pound-for-pound charts.
Canelo Alvarez vs Billy Joe Saunders
Mexican legend Canelo has established himself as the biggest box-office star on the planet since losing narrowly to Floyd Mayweather back in September 2013 for a sole defeat in 57 bouts. A third fight with Gennady Golovkin would set pulses racing after two previous close encounters, but Alvarez also has a liking for bashing up British boxers. Callum Smith, Rocky Fielding, Liam Smith, Amir Khan, Rhyan Rodes and Matthew Hatton all feature on his hit list, but could the unbeaten Saunders buck that trend?
Josh Taylor vs Jose Ramirez
Tartan Tornado Taylor is battle hardened after coming through the ultra-competitive World Boxing Super Series at light-welterweight with wins over Ivan Baranchyk and Regis Prograis, collecting the IBF and WBA titles as a result. American ace Ramirez has also come through some wars to secure the WBC and WBO titles, so this unification clash would be one for the purists to savour.
Josh Warrington vs Xu Can
Leeds Warrior Warrington has built up a huge following in his native city, with supporters reveling in his aggressive, all-action style. Domestic dust-ups with Lee Selby, Carl Frampton and Kid Galahad helped cement his position as IBF featherweight champion and a big bout with an overseas star is now the target. Beating China’s WBA title holder Xu would take the likeable Warrington to another level.
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