It was reported yesterday that former heavyweight champions Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder could be lining up together in separate fights in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on December 23.
The date was originally penned for an undisputed heavyweight world title fight between Oleksandr Usyk and Tyson Fury. However, Fury’s crossover fight with MMA superstar Francis Ngannou two weeks ago has seen the bout pushed back to next year.
Saudi Arabia has been aggressive in its approach to purchasing some of the most illustrious sports stars on the planet. The Kingdom appear to be intent on delivering a world class boxing event that will attempt to have all four corners of globe tuning in despite Usyk-Fury falling through. Saudi Arabia has turned to arguably the world’s third and fourth heavyweight boxers instead.
“Yeah, I’ve heard a lot of things over the last 24 hours.” Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn told reporters yesterday in Newcastle. “Look, all I can say from my position is we are in discussions with Saudi Arabia for a number of our fighters to fight on December 23rd. I think that is all I am going to say at the moment because that’s what they are, discussions.”
Otto Wallin (26-1, 14 KOs) has been reported as the opponent for Joshua two days ahead of Christmas. The Swedish southpaw comes off a split-decision win over Murat Gassiev six weeks ago in Turkey.
“It sounds like a credible night that is being planned, we would love to be a part of it.” Hearn added. “We will see where it goes. They approached us probably over the last week, maybe, for a number of our fighters for that date. Like I said, discussions, excitement. We have a lot of world class fighters that will want to fight in December and we will see where it leads.
“AJ wants to fight in December, whether he is part of those discussions or not, we will see. This week, we will see where it goes.”