Boxing - Pulev fumes at Whyte, Hearn after fight falls through

SOFIA (Reuters) - Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev was fuming at Dillian Whyte and his promoter Eddie Hearn on Friday after the announcement that the British boxer would fight recently dethroned WBO Champion Joseph Parker instead of facing him in his native country.

FILE PHOTO: September 11, 2017 Kubrat Pulev during a news conference for his eventually cancelled fight against Anthony Joshua in Cardiff Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Pulev and Whyte were ordered in April by the International Boxing Federation (IBF) to fight to decide the challenger for the IBF world heavyweight title held by Anthony Joshua. The Bulgarian said last week he was “95 percent sure” that the fight would take place in Sofia in August.

"I was expecting from Dillian Whyte and his team to run away from the fight, but I didn't expect from them to be such bullshit artists," Pulev said on his official website on Friday.

“They are extreme manipulators and plain schizophrenics.

“I can’t believe what I’m hearing and what a tricky way they chose to run away from the fight in Bulgaria.”

Whyte, who is also a contender for the World Boxing Council (WBC) title held by American Deontay Wilder, will face New Zealander Parker on July 28 in London.

Parker was beaten by Joshua in March on a unanimous points decision in their title unification bout in Cardiff.

Hearn, who is also Joshua’s promoter, said that a Whyte-Parker fight was the most intriguing option.

“Outside Joshua-Wilder this is the biggest fight in the heavyweight division...,” Hearn said. “It’s a pure 50-50 fight with two guys who have everything to lose.”

Pulev, however, said he’s still hoping to meet Whyte in Sofia.

“Dillian, if Hearn is misleading you somehow, let me tell you personally - I am still waiting for you in Bulgaria to help you get out of the delusion and bring you back to earth!”

Pulev pulled out of fighting Joshua in October last year after suffering a shoulder injury. Joshua, who also holds the WBA, IBO and WBO titles, went on to beat his replacement Carlos Takam.

Known as The Cobra, he previously challenged for the IBF world heavyweight title in 2014, losing to Wladimir Klitschko in Hamburg on a fifth-round knockout. Since then, Pulev has won five fights in a row.

Reporting by Angel Krasimirov; Editing by Christian Radnedge