- Eddie Hearn has revealed plans for Anthony Joshua’s next fight in Saudi Arabia
- Matchroom head named three potential opponents, including Francis Ngannou
- He’s ready! We’re seeing a new and confident AJ now – Listen to The Hook
That clash was expected to set up a long-awaited showdown between AJ and Deontay Wilder, and deal for the pair to meet inside the ring had been signed before plans were scuppered when the American was soundly defeated by Joseph Parker.
Speaking about AJ’s next move in the wake of the Wilder fight being scrapped, Hearn named three potential opponents for an event in Saudi Arabia but insisted that a clash against the winner of Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk remains their main target.
‘Right now, we have three fights that were in discussions for they’re all big.’ Hearn told iFL TV.
Eddie Hearn has detailed plans for Anthony Joshua’s next fight to be in Saudi Arabia in March
AJ capped off an impressive 2023 with a fifth-round stoppage of Otto Wallin last month
‘And that doesn’t involve Deontay Wilder. Before March our aim, and we’ve discussed this, is to fight the winner of Fury versus Usyk. That is all we want to do.’
‘Obviously there’s a [Filip] Hrgovic fight out there for the world heavyweight title; there’s a Francis Ngannou fight out there which would be absolutely colossal.
‘There’s other heavyweights as well, the [Zhilei] Zhang fight possibly as well with Queensbury.’
31-year-old Hrgovic also competed on the Day of Reckoning card back in December, demolishing Australian Mark de Mori in the first round to extend his unbeaten record as a professional across 17 fights.
Fellow Olympic medalist Zhilei Zhang is coming off the biggest win of his career back in September where he emphatically defeated Joe Joyce in their rematch to decisively halt the Brit’s momentum.
Hearn described a potential bout between Joshua and Francis Ngannou as ‘colossal’
Filip Hrgovic and Zhilei Zhang are also being discussed as potential opponents for Joshua
The 40-year-old revealed to Mail Sport in December that he had been in talks for a fight with Joshua and had even met with his team before negotiations stalled indefinitely.
Meanwhile, despite losing in his bow against Tyson Fury, Francis Ngannou is riding a wave of momentum since transitioning from MMA to the world of professional boxing.
The former UFC champion exceeded expectations against the Gypsy King, scoring a knockdown against the WBC champion with a clubbing left hook in the third round, before coming up second best after a controversial judges’ decision.