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Anthony Joshua treating Francis Ngannou bout like 'undisputed title fight'

Anthony Joshua treating Francis Ngannou bout like 'undisputed title fight'

Anthony Joshua is treating his bout with Francis Ngannou like an "undisputed title fight".

The former heavyweight world champion is set to take on the former UFC star in Saudi Arabia on March 8 and is preparing the contest with total focus rather than setting his sights on a possible fight with Tyson Fury or Oleksandr Usyk.

Joshua told The MMA Hour: "Let me say this again, I’m not focusing on [facing the Fury-Usyk winner]. I’m going to take my mind, I have to draw it back that Ngannou is my undisputed title fight. That’s the mentality I have to have.

"Ngannou is my undisputed fight. Because you’re only as good as your last fight, and I respect him a lot. He ain’t easy money. He’s a hard night’s work. And you know what’s crazy? So am I. I’m a hard night’s work for anyone. So let’s go, it’s going to be fireworks."

The plan had been for Joshua to take on Deontay Wilder but that was dashed when the American suffered a surprise loss to Joseph Parker last month but the Brit is more than happy to put himself to the test against Ngannou - who impressed on his ring debut against Fury last year.

He said: "I thought it might be Wilder still, because the contracts were signed, and it’s still a big fight. It’s still an amazing fight, it’s a crossover between UK and USA, all that good stuff promotional-wise, it’s still a good fight.

"So no, I kind of let that one slide for, and then it was the [Filip] Hrgovic situation, the [Andy] Ruiz situation, and then they put Francis there, and my team were like, 'This is a good opportunity on this day in Saudi Arabia against this opponent. What are you saying?' I said, 'Let’s roll. Let’s go.’"

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