American fighter Michael Hunter has insisted that a fight with the winner of Anthony Joshua vs Tyson Fury, and a shot at the IBF belt, is rightfully his.
Hunter, 21-1, has only ever been beaten by Oleksandr Usyk, who will also want to be in the conversation when it comes to determining opponents for the winner of the heavyweight unification bout.
Hunter, though, who was also held to a draw by Alexander Povetkin in the undercard of Joshua vs Ruiz II in Saudi Arabia, can put himself towards the front of the queue by defeating Filip Hrgovic in an IBF final eliminator.
The 32-year-old is already looking beyond the undefeated Croatian, and has been quoted by Sky Sports referring to a heavyweight title fight with either AJ or Fury has “rightfully mine”:
“We do know it’s a business, there’s a lot of things that go on, but I think I have the opportunity to claim what’s rightfully mine and put it out there, and shin.”
“I’ve got to this point. There’s been many factors to get here, but now I’ve put them in a mandatory position, it’s time to fight. There’s nothing else to do.”
Hunter was almost knocked out by Usyk while fighting at cruiserweight, so it’s difficult to see him giving either AJ or Fury any real troubles, if he were to defeat Hrgovic and set up a fight.
BoxRec have Hunter as the 45th best pound-for-pound fighter in the world, with Fury second and Joshua fourth. On paper, it’s a mismatch, but anything’s possible in this sport.