- Ngannou will go into fight on the back of a points defeat to Tyson Fury on debut
- The heavyweight duo are set to go head-to-head in Saudi Arabia later this year
- Pair will clash on a date originally earmarked for a potential AJ vs Wilder fight
His Excellency Turki Alalshikh has announced that the pair will go toe-to-toe as a part of Riyadh Season.
However, that deal broke down after Wilder lost to Joseph Parker, with the judges scoring the bout 118-111, 120-108, 120-108 in the Kiwi’s favour.
Mail Sport can reveal that the pair will face off on March 8, a date originally earmarked for Joshua’s proposed clash with Wilder.
The date for Anthony Joshua’s 10-round fight against Francis Ngannou has been confirmed
Ngannou (right) will go into the fight on the back of a points defeat to Tyson Fury in 2023
Joshua had been due to fight Deontay Wilder in March, but the American’s loss to Joseph Parker meant the deal broke down
After the news was revealed, Joshua shared a photo of himself wrapping his hands on Instagram with the caption: Ahh s***, here we go again.. 8/3/24.’
According to a report from Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, Wilder could still feature on the event’s undercard, with a fight against Chinese heavyweight Zhilei Zhang being discussed.
Like Wilder, Zhang medalled at the 2008 Olympics, earning a silver in the super-heavyweight division on home soil.
The 40-year-old picked up the biggest wins of his professional career to date in 2023, securing back-to-back stoppages against Joe Joyce to cement himself as a potential title contender.
AJ stated his interest in fighting Ngannou after the former UFC star broke into the WBC’s top 10 heavyweight rankings after his first professional boxing match.
No one gave Ngannou anything other than a puncher’s chance on his boxing debut against Tyson Fury last October.
However, Ngannou proved his worth against the Gypsy King – knocking the WBC champion to the canvas in the third round before ultimately losing on a split decision.
Many punters felt Ngannou did enough across the 10 round contest to win the fight and said that the Cameroonian had been ‘robbed’ to protect Fury’s fight with Oleksandr Usyk.
Ngannou almost caused a huge upset against Fury, knocking his opponent to the ground in the third round
Joshua, meanwhile, eased his way to victory against Otto Wallin in his last fight in December
However, the majority of boxing experts agreed that Fury was the rightful winner on the night – just edging past the Cameroonian after a disappointing performance from the Gypsy King.
Nevertheless, Ngannou walked away from the bout with a massive amount of credit and established himself as a worthwhile contender in the heavyweight division.
Meanwhile, Joshua continued his quest to return to the top of the heavyweight division by beating Otto Wallin on the Day of Reckoning.
Joshua put on a boxing masterclass, forcing Wallin’s corner to step in and call off the fight after five rounds.