Sports Shorts

Joshua vs. Fury: ‘still a way to go’ ahead of ‘biggest fight ever in British boxing’

News and reactions from the world of sport, featuring Man Utd’s pursuit of star striker Erling Haaland

1

Boxing

Warren: contracts signed but date and venue yet to be decided

Promoter Frank Warren says the potential heavyweight bout between Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury will be the “biggest fight ever in British boxing, bar none”.

It was revealed on Monday by Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn that contracts had been signed by the British rivals for a world title fight to decide the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.

Although the deal has been signed, Fury’s promoter Warren said there’s still the date and venue to be confirmed. Speaking to talkSPORT Warren believes it will happen “when they get in the ring”. “We’ve still got a way to go,” he said. “But everybody is on the same page to make this work. We are all collectively working to get a venue sorted now.”

Joshua, 31, holds the WBA, IBF and WBO belts while unbeaten Fury, 32, is the WBC champion. 

2

Formula 1 

Hamilton and Mercedes have ‘work to do’ before Bahrain GP

Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton admits that Mercedes have “lots of work to do” ahead of the season-opening grand prix in Bahrain on 28 March.

Pre-season testing saw Red Bull’s Max Verstappen finish fastest, while Mercedes encountered “more complications than usual during F1’s condensed pre-season programme” with the W12 “not yet performing to expectations”, Sky Sports reports.

“It’s going to be tough,” said Hamilton, who is aiming to win a record eighth F1 title. “It does appear we are perhaps not quick enough at the moment, but I have every faith in the team. We love challenges and this definitely is a challenge for us.”

3

Football

Haaland is United’s No.1 target

Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland is once again Manchester United’s top transfer priority - a year after missing out on signing the Norwegian hotshot. The 20-year-old is regarded by the Old Trafford club as “the one that got away”, but they are prepared to try and sign the prolific forward again, the Manchester Evening News reports. 

United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and football director John Murtough “mutually agree” that Haaland is the ideal long-term replacement for Romelu Lukaku. This season he has scored 31 goals in 30 appearances for German club Dortmund. 

4

Rugby union

World Rugby seeks investment for ‘seismic shake-up’ 

World Rugby is planning talks with investment banks to “accelerate a seismic commercial shake-up” of the sport. Sky News understands that rugby union’s global governing body has shortlisted three banks to advise it on options that are expected to include soliciting investment in the quadrennial men’s Rugby World Cup.

Meanwhile, World Rugby has also announced details of a new annual global women’s 15s competition and international playing windows that will “supercharge the women’s game”. A 16-team, three-tier “WXV” global competition is set to begin in 2023, with World Rugby investing £6.4m in its first two years.

5

Cricket

No fans for final T20Is between India and England

The three remaining Twenty20 internationals (T20Is) between India and England will be held behind closed doors in Ahmedabad due to rising coronavirus cases in the state of Gujarat. The series is currently level at 1-1 ahead of the third T20I on Tuesday and the fourth and fifth matches take place on 18 and 20 March respectively. 

A statement from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said: “The decision was arrived at following detailed discussions with the state and local health authorities. The BCCI will continue to comply with all the regulations put in place to curb the spread of the Covid-19 virus and will always put the health and safety of its fans and stakeholders at the top.”

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