Anthony Joshua, Ruiz rematch to take in Saudi Arabia

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Anthony Joshua  has confirmed Riyadh, Saudi Arabia as the venue for his rematch bout against Andy Ruiz Jr which  will take place on December 7.

He made this known via a tweet on Friday.

“Neutral grounds, let go December 7.”

Joshua lost his three heavyweight titles when he was stopped by the Mexican-American on June 1 in one of the biggest shocks in the division’s history.

The Brit immediately triggered the rematch clause in his contract in a bid to return to the sport’s summit.

Joshua will head to Riyadh for the rematch in December, which will be worth £70m, reports the Telegraph.

And he will start as the favourite, despite being dropped four times by the unfancied Ruiz.

Joshua had been a short odds-on favourite in New York and looked to be well on his way to victory after dropping Ruiz in the third round.

READ ALSO: Why Andy Ruiz refuses a rematch with Anthony Joshua

But he was immediately dumped on the canvas himself – and then again before the bell rang.

Ruiz then completed the job in the seventh round with a further pair of knockdowns.

Joshua made no excuses for his first professional defeat, despite rumours he suffered a panic attack in the dressing room before he walked out.

There were also reports – subsequently denied – that he was knocked out in sparring during his training camp.

The deposed champion said at the time, “Congratulations to Andy Ruiz, he has six months to be champion because the belts go in the air and he’s going to have to defend against myself.

“I wouldn’t mind if it was in New York again, I wouldn’t mind if it’s in England. New York opened their arms for me and my team and it was phenomenal. I have to correct what went wrong and get the job done in the rematch.”

Ruiz had demanded £40m for the second installment but will likely pocket a career-high £10m.

He also wanted the rematch to be held in Mexico but Joshua held the cards when it came to the venue.

Ruiz Jr said after his win, “I’ve been working really hard, man. I wanted to prove all the doubters wrong, I’d seen all the comments.

Yetunde Adegoke

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