Oleksandr Usyk is yet to reach an agreement with Daniel Dubois to defends his WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles.
Following the disappointing collapse of talks with Tyson Fury to stage an undisputed fight, Team Usyk promptly confirmed that the unified champion would go about serving his mandatories, of which he has three.
First up is the WBA’s Dubois, who is represented by the same promoters as Fury in Frank Warren’s Queensberry.
He won the mandatory position by gaining the sanctioning body’s ‘regular belt’ from Trevor Bryan in June of 2022, and has had one defence against Kevin Lerena in December.
Krassyuk told BT Sport that talks are ongoing every day, but that no contract was signed.
“That’s what we’re working on now. I had conversations with George Warren yesterday, day before yesterday, this morning, and we’re gonna have one tomorrow morning to try to find a solution.”
“If we don’t find a solution, the difference between the Tyson Fury and Dubois [negotiations is that] this agreement is regulated by the rules.”
“So if we don’t find the resolution and the contract is not signed, at the end of the day we have the purse bid.”
Whether or not the ‘solution’ Krassyuk is looking for is a problem or standard negotiations wasn’t clear.] What was clear though, was that they would be complying with the mandatory obligations no matter what.
The purse bid, as set by the WBA’s official order, will take place on May 3 just over one week from this interview.
Asked where he might look to stage it if he had a winning bid, the promoter mentioned Poland as a potential – a border-sharing nation with Usyk’s Ukraine and therefore the closest he could currently come to a home fight given the ongoing Russia conflict.
“According to the purse bid rules, you have to put at least three dates and three possible locations. So if I was to bid this afternoon, I would say Middle East, Poland, and the UK.”
Should Usyk beat Dubois, he will then likely be ordered to face Filip Hrgovic and then Zhilei Zhang. Fans will hope that talks can resume with Fury at some stage in between, but that’s far from a given.