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Carl Frampton's Advice to Anthony Joshua: Stay Busy, Face Hrgovic

Former two-weight world champion Carl Frampton has advised former two-time heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (28-3, 25 KOs) to maintain his activity and momentum rather than waiting for the winner of the upcoming undisputed heavyweight clash between Oleksandr Usyk (21-0, 14 KOs) and Tyson Fury (34-0-1, 24 KOs).

Carl Frampton

Joshua's recent performance on March 8 saw him continue his positive momentum with a dominant two-round victory over former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This win marked Joshua's third consecutive victory following his back-to-back defeats to Oleksandr Usyk in 2021 and 2022, showcasing his improvements and progress in 2023.

While Joshua is in a prime position to challenge the winner of the Usyk vs. Fury fight scheduled for May 18, both Usyk and Fury have rematch clauses, indicating that Joshua may have to wait until at least 2025 for his title shot.

Frampton has advised Joshua to stay active and not wait around, suggesting a potential bout against unbeaten Filip Hrgovic (17-0, 14 KOs). Hrgovic is currently the IBF's mandatory challenger for the IBF world title, but like Joshua, he would also need to wait for his chance to face Usyk or Fury.

The status of the IBF title is uncertain, with reports suggesting that the sanctioning body may not grant an extension to the winner of the Usyk vs. Fury fight, potentially leading to a vacant title. In such a scenario, Hrgovic and Joshua could be ordered to negotiate and fight for the vacant title.

Frampton believes that a fight against Hrgovic would be very winnable for Joshua, stating,

"I think Hrgovic is made for AJ. It’s a very, very winnable fight for AJ. I’d have him as a strong favorite in that fight."

He emphasized the importance of Joshua staying active and not waiting for Usyk and Fury, suggesting that taking a fight against Hrgovic would keep his momentum going while waiting for a title shot. Frampton praised Joshua for his activity, highlighting his four fights over the last year as a positive departure from the norm among high-profile boxers.


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