by Kris Anthony (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Out of the ring since November 2019, IBF featherweight champion Josh Warrington (30-0, 7 KO’s) is still aiming for Can Xu, a fight that was nearly made but KO’d by COVID-19 earlier in 2020.
WBA “regular” champion Xu has made three defenses of his title and also last fought in November of 2019. If a fight was made behind closed doors, at least all would be fair with the two respective fighters having been out of the ring for the same period of time.
“I understand that he [Xu] still wants to fight. We are getting to the stage now where we want to get that pen to paper, find a venue and get the logistics right,” Warrington said to the Yorkshire Post.
“I would have said a few months ago to wait for the fans to come back but now we are into August and in a few months it will be a year since I last boxed. You can’t really say that was much of a fight either. I had a full camp but it was only a round and a half in the ring; it is not the most that you want when you are trying to keep some momentum going.
“There is always a risk if you push it back. I am at the stage now that if there is an opportunity there to have the fight and it means we need to go behind closed doors, or have a percentage of the crowd there, then I would be willing to do that.”
“I believe that ring rust, a lot of the time, happens early in your career. I am 30 fights deep now and I have had 14 or 15 12-round fights, so I don’t think a warm-up fight could prepare me for what I would be going into with Can Xu,” Warrington said.
“Secondly, I am in a position where I don’t have the luxury to consider warm-up fights because I have got mandatory fights and they don’t want to be waiting around. I would be exempt with a unification fight but not a warm-up fight.”