Heavyweight boxing sensation Anthony Joshua delivered a huge dig to British rival and former champion Tyson Fury with a four-letter tweet telling him to “Get fit you fat f***” on Thursday.
The tweet comes amid rumors of a mega-fight between Joshua, the current IBF, WBA and IBO belt holder and Fury, who beat long-time champion Wladimir Klitschko in November 2015 for the heavyweight championship and never lost the belts in the ring.
Joshua recently stopped challenger Carlos Takam in the 10th round in front of 80,000 spectators at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales and has since been called out by Fury, inactive since his win over Klitschko in Germany.
Last week, Fury posted an Instagram post in address to Joshua and WBC king Deontay Wilder, in which he said: “Guess who’s back running. Counting down the days till I get in with the big stiff man AJ, I see glass. & honest promised Wilder I’d kick his a** sea bass.”
Fury also accused Joshua, who has been called out by Wilder himself as well as WBO champion Joseph Parker, of struggling against “midget” Takam, insisting he would be no match for him should he regain full fitness.
Showing a more spiteful side that stands in stark contrast to his ‘stay humble’ mantra, ‘AJ’ hit back with a series of tweets aimed at Parker and a video response to Wilder, before finishing with a foul-mouthed response to Fury, tweeting “& Tyson Fury get fit you fat f***.”
The post proved a hit with boxing fans, gaining over 30,000 retweets and over 60,000 likes on Twitter at the time of writing.
Boxing politics and concerns over the fighter’s mental health saw Fury, nicknamed ‘Gypsy King,’ stripped of or relinquish his titles soon after a rematch with Ukrainian Klitschko broke down.
A bitter legal battle with UK Anti-Doping (UKAD), which contests the fighter tested positive for a banned steroid in June 2016, and a disillusionment with the sport further contributed to Fury’s two-year absence.
His excessive weight gain in that period has regularly made headlines, with Fury even bearing his chest in press conferences to make fun of his portly shape.
But the 6ft 9in Manchester man insists he is now on the comeback trail and ready to regain his titles. He even posted a tongue-in-cheek tweet to Donald Trump asking whether the US President would acompany him on his ring walk for his comeback fight.
American Wilder published a video directly calling out Joshua after crushing Bermane Stiverne in one round on Saturday. Although the ‘Bronze Bomber’ has yet to confirm his opponent for his next fight, it will likely be former Joshua foe Dominic Breazeale, who stopped Eric Molina in an eliminator on the undercard.
“Anthony Joshua, you know I’m coming for you. There’s no need to talk about next year or the next year or in 2020; 2018 is what you should be worried about,” Wilder said in the video, posted to Instagram.
“You said if the people want it, then you want it. Well, the people want it. Do you? Or do y’all have some hidden agendas? Are y’all hiding anything? We’re on it. We’re on it. Say the fight or shut up.”