British Boxing Board hopeful boxing will return in July

Anthony Joshua was supposed to fight Kubrat Pulev in the Tottenham Hotspur stadium in June. Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

The British Boxing Board of Control hopes professional boxing will return in the UK in July -- but will limit the number of fights per show to five.

The Board cancelled boxing in the UK in March and when the sport returns it is most likely to be behind closed doors, with no fans.

There will also be a maximum of five contests on each promotion.

"Depending upon Government decisions it is hopeful that professional Boxing will commence in July 2020 and we will continue to use our best endeavours to do so and are working closely with our promoters," the Board said in a statement.

"Initially, it is unlikely that crowd attending promotions will be permitted.

"In that situation the emphasis will be on minimal numbers of officials, licence holders, members of the promoter's team and broadcasting personnel to facilitate a tournament that meets all BBBofC safety requirements.

"All licence holders and those personnel in attendance will be required to undertake COVID-19 testing. The time frame for these tests will be confirmed at a later date.

"No tournament will be permitted to run unless the venue has been approved by the BBBofC post the Governement lockdown being lifted."

The biggest British boxing stars like WBA-IBF-WBO world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, who was due to fight Bulgaria's Kubrat Pulev at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in June, will have to wait until restrictions are lifted before they fight in the UK again.

Promoters like Eddie Hearn and Frank Warren will have to weigh up whether to wait to put on some of their bigger names, or take a financial hit and put them on behind closed doors.

Big fights that have been postponed during the lockdown in the UK include heavyweight bouts between Daniel Dubois and Joe Joyce, Dillian Whyte and Alexander Povetkin as well as Dereck Chisora and Oleksandr Usyk. The super lightweight fight between Josh Taylor and Apinun Khongsong was also postponed as well as the junior lightweight bout between Carl Frampton and Jamel Herring.