• Wednesday, February 28, 2024
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Anthony Joshua vs Francis Ngannou fight confirmed in Saudi Arabia


After weeks of speculations, the much talked-about boxing fight is set to happen as UK’s leading boxing promoter Matchroom and Queensberry announced that former world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua will fight Francis Ngannou, a former UFC champion on March 8 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

After successfully staging world-class bouts in December, Saudi Arabia will again stage a major heavyweight fight in March.

Joshua, 34, was set to face Deontay Wilder after beating Otto Wallin, but the 38-year-old American’s loss to New Zealander Joseph Parker stopped plans for the highly-anticipated big-money fight.

According to Matchroom and Queensberry, a press conference has been scheduled on January 15 to reveal more details, with reports suggesting that Joshua will get into the ring against Ngannou on Friday, March 8 in Riyadh.

“Confirmed: @anthonyjoshua vs @francis_ngannou is signed to take place during @RiyadhSeason!,” Queensberry Promotions @Queensberry said on its X (formerly Twitter) account.

“Fight date and Kick-off press conference details to be released next week! #JoshuaNgannou.”

Joshua stopped Otto Wallin in the fifth round stoppage in December, sealing his third straight victory last year.

Speaking after his bout against Wallin, Joshua declared: “I’m down to fight anyone. Whenever and whoever.”

Ngannou, former UFC heavyweight champion sensationally knocked down Tyson Fury in his first professional boxing bout in October 2023 in Riyadh, but the three judges declared Fury the winner.

Ngannou held the UFC heavyweight title from 2021 until 2022, before vacating the gold while leaving the UFC in 2023.

The 37-year-old Cameroonian signed with the Professional Fighters League, a rival MMA promotion to the UFC, which has allowed him to box ahead of his debut in the company.

The WBC recently installed Ngannou in their top 10 of title contenders following his creditable defeat.