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Anthony Joshua to Clash with Former UFC Champ Francis Ngannou in Riyadh Showdown

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Nigerian boxer Anthony Joshua is set to face former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, as announced by Matchroom and Queensberry on Friday night. The fight is scheduled for March, with the exact date to be confirmed next week, and a press conference is planned for January 15 in London.

The proposed bout between Joshua and Deontay Wilder, initially set for March 9, seems to have been replaced by the matchup with Ngannou. Joshua expressed interest in fighting Ngannou after the former UFC star entered the WBC’s top 10 heavyweight rankings following his debut in professional boxing.

Despite Ngannou being seen as an underdog in his boxing debut against Tyson Fury last October, where he knocked Fury down, expectations for Joshua to face Wilder diminished after Wilder’s loss to Joseph Parker on the same card as Joshua’s win over Otto Wallin on December 23.

Following his victory against Wallin, Joshua affirmed his readiness to face any opponent, stating, “I’m down to fight anyone. Whenever and whoever.” Saudi Arabia, known for hosting significant boxing events, will once again be the stage for a major heavyweight fight shortly after Fury’s undisputed world title bout against Oleksandr Usyk on February 17.

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