Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko could be matched in a heavyweight super-fight after the latter's rematch with Tyson Fury was called off.
Joshua's manager Eddie Hearn has been in contact with Klitschko's camp after the Ukrainian's plan reclaim the WBA and WBO belts from Fury next month were scuppered by the Englishman's withdrawal.
Yet the blockbuster fight would likely have to take place in 2017, with Joshua's second defence of his IBF title — expected to be against unbeaten New Zealander Joseph Parker — currently scheduled for 26 November.
"Reached out to @Klitschko team - we love the fight!" was Hearn's response on Twitter when asked by ESPN boxing writer Dan Rafael if Joshua could take on the former world champion.
Klitschko would be the most accomplished opponent of Anthony Joshua's career so far. The 40-year-old successfully defended his heavyweight title for a record 18 times between 2006 and 2016 but was shocked by Fury in Dusseldorf last November.
Klitschko's manager Bernd Boente says the fighter is being "held hostage" by Fury who has now pulled out of two scheduled rematches.
"Wladimir is totally disappointed that the guy postponed again," said Boente.
"Wladimir is being held hostage by this guy. He wants to fight, he trains, and now the first fight is almost a year ago.
"It's up to the governing bodies to make a decision regarding the titles, but that is not in our hands."
Fury's camp announced on Friday night that he had been declared "medically unfit" to fight and required treatment before going back into the ring.
"It is with the deepest regret that we have to announce that the world heavyweight championship rematch between Tyson Fury and Wladimir Klitschko, scheduled to take place on the 29th October 2016 at the Manchester Arena, will not be going ahed," a statement read.
"This has, this week, been declared medically unfit to fight. Medical specialists have advised that the condition is too severe to allow him to participate in the rematch and that we will require treatment before going back into the ring. Tyson will now immediately undergo the treatment he needs to make a full recovery.
"We and Tyson wish to express our sincere apologies to all those concerned with the event and all the boxing fans who had been looking forward to the rematch. Tyson is understandably devastated by the development."