Former world heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko says he is not contemplating retirement despite having seen three title bouts fall through this year.
“I’ve never thought about stopping, not once, after the defeat and losing my belts,” Klitschko, who lost his IBF, WBO and WBA titles to Tyson Fury last November, told German daily Bild.
“As long as I can perform in the ring, am fit and motivated, I’ll keep going.
“I want to box in March or April against IBF world champion Anthony Joshua.
Hamburg-based Klitschko, who turns 41 next March, has endured a frustrating 2016.
His rematch against Fury had been set for July 9, only for an injury to force the British fighter out.
Fury then pulled out of a second bout scheduled for this Saturday as he battles depression.
Earlier this month, Fury’s licence to box was suspended by the British Boxing Board of Control.
Fury has vacated the World Boxing Organisation (WBO) and World Boxing Association (WBA) titles he still held to focus on his recovery.
Klitschko had planned to fight on December 10 against Britain’s Joshua, who holds the International Boxing Federation (IBF) belt, but both camps say the fight will now not take place.
The Ukrainian has picked up a calf injury and the WBA has not confirmed whether the vacant belt would be on the line.
But Klitschko should meet Joshua in March or April next year.
“That (the calf injury) isn’t the reason why I won’t fight again this year,” Klitschko said.
His manager Bernd Boente said they were simply running out of time to get the Joshua fight set up for December 10.
“For the planned date, we’re simply out of time,” said Boente.
“Fight contracts would have to be negotiated, tickets sold and the TV partners needed to publicise the fight accordingly.”
But Klitschko is determined to fight again.
“There will be a couple of big, spectacular fights with me in the ring,” he added.