Alexander Povetkin's promoter has challenged Anthony Joshua to "prove he is the best" and face the Russian WBA mandatory challenger.
Joshua holds the WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight belts, winning the latter in a unanimous decision over Joseph Parker last month.
Povetkin fought on the undercard for that bout, scoring a brutal knockout over David Price, and is in position to challenge for the belt he lost in a defeat to Wladimir Klitschko in October 2013.
A unification bout with WBC champion Deontay Wilder appears to be Joshua's priority, and an agreement between the camps of the two undefeated knockout merchants would scupper Povetkin's hopes.
But Povetkin's promoter Andrey Ryabinsky told Sky Sports: "I believe that Joshua will follow and cooperate with the rules of the sanctioning bodies for the titles that he holds.
"I think every fighter has to fight the best to prove that he is the best. I see no reason why Joshua would not want to fight Povetkin as his next opponent."
Introducing you 2 the sweet science of boxing Hit & don't get hit pic.twitter.com/BbhqSwoxef— Anthony Joshua (@anthonyfjoshua) April 1, 2018
Ryabinsky would ideally like a prospective bout with Joshua to be held at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow but would have no problem with it being staged on British soil or in the United States.
"We are happy to make the fight in England as both fighters have a lot of fans in England, there are many Russians that live in England and many who will come to England for the fight," he added.
"Yes, of course, it is possible [to fight Joshua in Russia]. [The Luzhniki Stadium] has been recently renovated, it's a legendary stadium, it has the capacity for a fight of this magnitude.
"Doing the fight in the USA is also an option.
"We have started discussing the fight. [Joshua's promoter] Eddie Hearn is a very respectable promoter, we consider him our partner, and we hope that we can have a pleasant and efficient negotiations process.
"I believe that Povetkin is one of the best heavyweights in the world today. Joshua vs Povetkin being one of the most competitive fights in this division - it has to happen."
19. August 2018
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|Erasmus demands improved Springboks|
|Athletics pull even with Astros in AL West|
|Mercurial quick Johnson retires from cricket|
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|Busch picks up first win of season in Night Race|
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|Woakes welcomes back ´big-game player´ Stokes|
|´Genius´ Messi still amazes Valverde|
|All Blacks, Springboks await Namibia at Rugby World Cup|
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|Rain halts plays at Wyndham Championship|
|De Gea will extend contract soon, says Mourinho|
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|Frampton set for Warrington fight after dominant Windsor Park win|
|Messi makes LaLiga history with Barcelona´s 6000th goal|
|MC Alger defeat throws quarter-final chase wide open|
|Barcelona 3 Deportivo Alaves 0: Messi´s milestone goal sets up victory|
18. August 2018
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|Chelsea are not title contenders yet, claims Sarri|
|Bayern Munich boss Kovac planning for Boateng stay|
|Championship Review: West Brom crush QPR as Leeds stay perfect|
|Allegri pleased with Ronaldo despite goalless Juventus debut|
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|Cristiano Ronaldo´s debuts: Best impressed, scoring a penalty & a blank for Juventus|
|Old boy Escare haunts Catalans in big Wigan win|
|Preston North End 2 Stoke City 2: Super sub Crouch salvages a point|
|Pochettino vows not to discuss Alderweireld future before five-minute answer|
|Waring, Aiken lead the way as Olesen stays in the hunt|
|Linking play, forcing saves and clashing with goalkeeper - Cristiano Ronaldo´s Juventus debut|
|Chelsea 3 Arsenal 2: Alonso snatches win after Gunners comeback|
|West Ham still haunted by last season - Pellegrini|
|Puel defends Vardy after Wolves red card|
|Chievo 2 Juventus 3: Ronaldo´s debut ends in dramatic win|
|Mbappe: Neymar is Paris Saint-Germain´s superstar|
|Pickford should have seen red - Hughes fumes over challenge on Ings|
|Kohli and Rahane star as India edge day one|
|AC Milan´s Strinic sidelined by heart problem|
|Kane happy to banish August goal hoodoo|
|Guingamp 1 Paris Saint-Germain 3: Mbappe returns to inspire comeback|
|Springboks´ second-half revival punishes Pumas|
|Finally! Kane scores a Premier League goal in August|
|Warnock enjoyed ´poetic justice´ of Kenedy´s penalty woe|
|Holders Eintracht Frankfurt stunned by Ulm in DFB-Pokal|
|West Ham 1 Bournemouth 2: Wilson, Cook condemn Hammers to successive losses|
|Tottenham 3 Fulham 1: Trippier and Kane help Spurs avoid Wembley wobble|
|Leicester City 2 Wolves 0: Lucky Foxes win despite Vardy red card|
|Everton 2 Southampton 1: Richarlison continues fine start|
|Drochtersen/Assel 0 Bayern Munich 1: Lewandowski spares Bayern´s blushes|
|Violent hack, no passes, missed penalty - Kenedy´s Cardiff nightmare|
|Ronaldo handed Juventus debut against Chievo|
|Cheika and Hooper frustrated by second-half slump|
|Hansen issues warning after All Blacks win Wallabies ´prizefight´|
|Stuttgart stay good for Pavard, says Reschke|
|You can´t buy class - United boss Mourinho blasts City documentary|
|Cardiff City 0 Newcastle United 0: Penalty miss rounds off abject day for Kenedy|
|Lopetegui open to rotating Real Madrid goalkeepers|
|´World´s best´ Alisson will be difficult to replace, says Roma boss Di Francesco|
|Dragons and Sharks pounce on Panthers after four get sin-binned|