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Anthony Joshua is 'nearing a deal' for his next fight against Jermaine Franklin in London on April 1

"We hope to get the deal over the finish line to help Jermaine bring his lifetime dream to fruition," promoter Dmitriy Salita hopes to finalise terms soon for Jermaine Franklin to face Anthony Joshua in London on April 1

Anthony Joshua
Image: Anthony Joshua is set to face Jermaine Franklin in his next fight

Anthony Joshua is 'nearing a deal' for a fight against Jermaine Franklin, with the American's promotional team hoping to finalise the bout 'very soon.'

Franklin has emerged as the preferred opponent for Joshua's next heavyweight fight, which is expected to be scheduled at The O2 in London on April 1.

Dmitriy Salita, Franklin's promoter, has confirmed to Sky Sports that negotiations are 'moving in the right direction' and he is hopeful of reaching a final agreement for the Joshua fight.

Jermaine Franklin, Dillian Whyte
Image: Jermaine Franklin could head back to Britain after November fight with Dillian Whyte

"Jermaine is a world-class heavyweight from Michigan in America, who is on his way to bringing a big win back home," said Salita.

"We hope to get the deal over the finish line to help Jermaine bring his lifetime dream to fruition."

Franklin made his UK debut in November, earning credit for a hard-fought majority decision loss to Dillian Whyte, which was the first defeat on the 29-year-old's 22-fight record.

Demsey McKean vs. Ariel Esteban Bracamonte at the 02 Arena, London. Picture date: Sunday February 27, 2022.
Image: Australian Demsey McKean was also on the shortlist for Joshua

Australian Demsey McKean and Sweden's Otto Wallin, two southpaw contenders, had previously been linked with Joshua.

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But the British star appears to have opted for the 6ft 2in tall, orthodox fighting style of Franklin, following back-to-back losses to the masterful southpaw Oleksandr Usyk.

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Tyson Fury says that he is 'ready to rock and roll' against Oleksandr Usyk and is hopeful the bout could happen 'in the next few months'

Joshua's second world title reign was ended by a unanimous decision loss to Usyk in September 2021, while the Ukrainian retained the WBA, IBF and WBO belts with a split decision victory in their rematch last August.

Talks are at an advanced stage for Usyk to share the ring with WBC king Tyson Fury in the next few months.

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