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His Loss – Anthony Joshua left red-faced after public Frank Warren heavyweight snub

Anthony Joshua was a glaring omission from Frank Warren’s list of best active heavyweights as he aims to reignite his career in 2023. Joshua has lost his last two fights to Ukraine’s Oleksandr Usyk and Warren believes less proven boxers in his own promotion stable should be ranked higher than the former heavyweight champion.

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Joshua lost his belts in convincing style to Usyk and has now been tasked with rebuilding his career as he maps out a route back to a world title fight. August’s second defeat to Usyk was particularly damaging as Joshua failed to reclaim his status as world champion.

And he was not even considered by Warren as the promoter broke down his top five current heavyweights. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Warren instead opted for his own fighters in Joe Joyce and Daniel Dubois when naming the next best contending heavyweights after Usyk, Tyson Fury, and Deontay Wilder. And Warren is under no doubt whatsoever about the division’s best fighter.

“Obviously Tyson [Fury], I think he’s far easily the number one,” Warren said on his Queensbury Promotions channel. “I think number two is Usyk. I think number three is [Deontay] Wilder. I’d then say Joe [Joyce] and I’d also say, and you’d probably say ‘well you would say this, but I also think Daniel [Dubois]’s there.”

Joyce, 37, recently knocked out Joseph Parker to seal his greatest career win so far. Rising talent Dubois is showing great signs of potential in the heavyweight division, but still has a limited resume, and his inclusion over Joshua perhaps points to bias against fighters within Warren’s stable.

However, Warren has insisted that Joyce and Dubois would both knock out Joshua if they are chosen as opponents in his 2023 return. “Now I’m going to be able to start throwing Daniel Dubois at him and Joe,” he told Sky Sports.

“If he doesn’t fight one of them I think they’ll find it hard to sell anything and he can’t say, ‘Why should I do that?’. I’ll tell you why, he’ll become mandatory.”

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“He’s liable to get knocked over by anybody. I’d put any of my guys in with him. Any of them. Joe Joyce would knock him out and Dubois would do the same. We’ve worked very hard over the last few years on this heavyweight scene and we’ve guided our guys in different organizations and we’ve boxed it off a bit so I’m pleased.”

Meanwhile, Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn has already mapped out a possible dream three-fight year for his star British fighter, eyeing up an intriguing bout against ‘Bronze Bomber’ Wilder.

“If you’re looking at three fights next for which you hope for him to have, maybe you go Dillian Whyte, [Deontay] Wilder, Fury,” Hearn said. “I mean that would be the dream year, but probably one of them would be nice the way everything’s going. I do feel that AJ – Wilder is just a massive global heavyweight fight. Two titans that the fight could end at any moment. I think it’s a tremendous fight.”

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