Anthony Joshua II vs Oleksandr Usyk
The blockbuster heavyweight rematch between Anthony Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk is taking place this weekend.
Britain’s Joshua was outclassed by Ukrainian rival Usyk in their first fight at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last September, losing his world heavyweight titles in the process.
The rematch was originally planned for May but the ongoing situation in the champion’s homeland put that on hold.
Usyk travelled back to Ukraine and joined the military in defence of his nation after the Russian invasion which began in February.
The 35-year-old later received permission from his country’s sports minister to return to his training camp and gear up for the epic rematch with Joshua, 32.
The WBA, IBF and WBO world titles will all be on the line, as will the Ring Magazine strap after WBC champion Tyson Fury confirmed his retirement.
Date and start time
This fight is being billed as The Rage on the Red Sea and will take place on Saturday, August 20.
It will be held in the indoor arena at the King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
The undercard action is set to begin from 3pm UK time, with a number of preliminary bouts for those in attendance before radio and TV coverage begins.
Ring walks are expected around 10.30pm with promoters Matchroom confirming the estimated main event start time is 10:54pm in the UK, which is gone midnight local time.
What has been Said?
Anthony Joshua: “Definitely the hunger’s still there.
“Blips happen, but resilience, mental toughness, consistency will prevail. I’m focussed on the target sitting over there.
“God willing I’ll perform and become three-time heavyweight champion of the world.
“The fight with Usyk, he bust my a*** for some rounds and I had to take that defeat like a man as well. I hold myself accountable.
“In the fight in September I was wrong and he was right, I have to reverse that August 20…
“We have to give him, his team credit where credit’s due. I respect him and his craft and what he’s achieved.
“If I’m around someone that’s better than me on the night, I have to push myself to be better than them. The great thing is I’ve got a second chance.”
Oleksandr Usyk: “I am very happy I’m here. I am very happy my next fight is gonna happen. It’s a big honour for me to be here.
“As we all know, we are not in the best conditions at the moment back at home, but we are doing what we have to do, we are doing our job, working hard to achieve our goals.
“I never made any loud and bright speeches. All I did is I just work hard in my training camp in my gym, that’s what I’m gonna do until the fight.
“And then I will enter the ring and I will make you happy with my boxing, thank you.”
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