Tyson Fury must recover his ‘sense of reality’ if a potential blockbuster heavyweight title showdown between himself and British rival Anthony Joshua will ever take place.
That is the view of boxing promoter Eddie Hearn, who is hopeful that the bout will take place at ‘the back end of next year’.
Fury, who lives in Morecambe, has not fought since beating Wladimir Klitschko on points to win the world title in July 2015.
Since then he has been beset by weight and depression issues, while last week he was handed a doping ban – backdated two years – after testing positive for a banned steroid.
In the meantime, Joshua has stolen the limelight after beating Klitschko earlier this year and holds the IBF, IBO and WBA world title belts.
Fury has indicated that he would be willing to fight Joshua as long as he gets more of a 50-50 split of the purse, something Hearn, who manages Joshua, suggested was a joke .
“Anthony needs to be in relevant fights against the likes of Joseph Parker and Deontay Wilder and potentially Tyson Fury at the back end of next year,” said Hearn.
“We’re not looking for Anthony to have easy fights. There are only two reasons it (a fight with Fury) doesn’t happen. The first is that Tyson Fury has lost all sense of reality for a deal for that fight with AJ.
“He wants a lot more than a 50-50 split, which is a joke.
“Second reason is that he can’t get himself into a physical condition which is good enough to fight AJ.
“I’ve talked to Tyson Fury numerous times about it and I don’t know if he was having a laugh when he was saying it’s a 50-50 split or not, but we’re not in a position to talk about that fight anyway for a while.”
Hearn believes Fury will require a couple of warm-up fights before he can face his man.
“Tyson needs one or two fights before he can fight AJ,”said Hearn.
“He needs to get himself properly fit first and he knows that because I’ve read about him saying that.
“I saw him saying that joking aside he wasn’t really doing anything serious in training and had a long way to go. He can’t really run properly at the moment because he’s so heavy so is doing other things.
“It’s one thing doing 40 minutes on the cross trainer, but it’s another doing a proper camp, that’s when we will find out if he can hold up. “
Fury is set to learn in January as to whether his boxing licence will be re-instated.
“One thing that is being overlooked in all this is that he received a doping ban,” said Hearn.
“That’s not really being talked about. If that’s the decision that UKAD have made and he has served his ban, then now he’s back in the gym. But I think the board will want to deal with other issues like depression and cocaine use.”