Following Jarrell Miller’s failed drugs test, multiple heavyweights have offered themselves up as potential replacement opponents to step in and fight Anthony Joshua on June 1 in New York.
It was announced in the early hours of Wednesday morning that the American tested positive for GW1516 (a metabolic modulator also known as cardarine and endurobol), throwing his bout against AJ into doubt.
Joshua and Miller were supposed to meet at Madison Square Garden in New York on June 1, however this now may not go ahead, depending on the New York State Athletic Commission’s ruling on the matter.
As the news broke, various heavyweight contenders put themselves forward as potential replacements should ‘Big Baby’ be ruled out.
First was 30-year-old American Michael Hunter, who simply replied to Eddie Hearn, saying: “Call me, Eddie.”
Hunter (16-1, 11 KOs) recently signed with Hearn and Matchroom USA having put together a string of victories following his cruiserweight defeat to Oleksandr Usyk in 2017.
Whyte has told talkSPORT he would drop everything to have another shot at his fellow Brit.
“I would jump in and have some,” he told talkSPORT host Jim White on Wednesday morning.
“I would take the fight with Joshua at the drop of the hat. I would fight him seven days a week.
“If they want it, they can have it. Simple as that.”
“I can whip myself into shape for the right opportunity. I can just push for a few weeks and get sparring.
“When opportunities like these present themselves you’ve got to take them.”
“I don’t know all the ins and outs [of Miller’s doping results] so until the full report is produced, we don’t know if it’s something simple or it’s something major.
“We’ll wait and see.”
Next came 33-year-old unbeaten Brit Joe Joyce, whose manager tweeted: “Give us a call, Eddie Hearn,” and “[Joe is] more ready and more qualified than Miller was.”
Joyce (8-0, 8 KOs) is a former GB amateur teammate of AJ and turned pro late following his Olympic silver medal win at Rio in 2016.
Finally, Joseph Parker suggested himself by stating he is, “very ready and willing” to step in at late notice.
The 27-year-old New Zealander (25-2, 19 KOs) lost a decision to Anthony Joshua last year, but seemingly would happily take a rematch on June 1.
Anthony Joshua, the three-belt world champion has told his promoter to find a replacement if needs be. ‘
“I spoke to AJ last night. It’s not an ideal situation and we have to wait and see what happens with Jarrell,” he told the Daily Mail. “If he is unable to fight, AJ will still be fighting June 1 in Madison Square Garden.”
“He has told me he will fight absolutely anyone and so we are looking at our options right now.” Miller’s team have said they are seeking more information from VADA, and the American’s B sample is expected to be tested.
Joshua could fight former world title challenge Luis Ortiz or Polish fighter Adam Kownacki, as Matchroom has drawn up a five-man shortlist of potential replacements. Miller caused a stir during his and Joshua’s explosive press tour, accusing AJ of being a drugs cheat.