Anthony Joshua will return to the boxing ring on Saturday night, as he fights Kubrat Pulev in a successful heavyweight clash through the end of 2020.
The British heavyweight superstar was due to face his mandatory IBF challenger in June at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in front of 60,000 fans.
However, the COVID-19 lockdown saw that has been put on hold and Joshua will now take on Pulev at Wembley Arena, with just 1,000 people allowed to watch.
But after a difficult year, boxing fans will at least get to see AJ in action again ahead of what is set to be an exciting 2021 in the sport.
Joshua v Pulev: UK fight date
- The 12-round heavyweight title fight is scheduled for Saturday 12 December
- It will take place at Wembley Arena in London, with 1000 fans able to attend
- The undercard will start at 7 p.m., the main event to start between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m.
- The fight will be broadcast live on Sky Sports Box Office from 7 p.m.
- talkSPORT will bring you regular combat updates on the radio
Joshua v Pulev: What was said?
Joshua is aiming for a 2021 showdown with compatriot Tyson Fury, but insists he doesn't look past the dangerous Bulgarian Pulev and is wary of the threat he poses.
He said: “Pulev is named after a great Bulgarian warrior and he has this warrior spirit, he carries the hopes of his nation.
“He's tough, he's got a good shot and he's going to dig deep. He found a way to beat all of his opponents except Klitschko, but I know I prepared well and should be victorious.
“I know the lockdown has been tough, but for me it has been a blessing.
“I focused on training, on improving my boxing, all year. I didn't have to do a lot of commercial or promotional things, I had more time with my family and more time to seriously train. And the longer I wait for Fury, the better prepared I will be.
Pulev said: “For a small country of Bulgaria, defending the heavyweight titles is a big achievement.
“This fight is for my late father and all Bulgarians around the world! I come to London to win the world heavyweight championship. "
Promoter Eddie Hearn, meanwhile, said, “I can't tell you how happy I am to see the fans coming back to our live boxing events.
“While the team has done an incredible job over the past 10 months, we live and breathe through the energy and atmosphere that a live crowd generates.
“It's so fitting that they can come back for an AJ fight, as over the past few years he's broken all kinds of attendance records in the UK and beyond. It is such a positive gesture for boxing and all sports. Welcome back!"
Joshua v Pulev: TV Channel & Live Stream
The fight will be shown live on Sky Sports Box Office at a cost of £ 24.95. Sky coverage will begin at 7 p.m. before a stacked submap.
You don't have to be a Sky customer to watch the fight - you can stream live at the same price on your computer, mobile and tablet.
Sky Sports Box Office will also be available on BT TV. There are two ways to make the purchase: by tuning to channel 496 or by searching for the event in the BT player.
Joshua vs. Pulev: Undercard
Rising heavyweight Lawrence Okolie will fight on the undercard as he looks to take his undefeated professional record to 15 wins.
However, it won't be for the vacant WBO Cruiserweight title after initial opponent Krzysztof Glowacki tested positive for COVID-19 and was forced to step down.
Okolie will now face Nikodem Jezewski, who is ranked in the top 15 by the WBO.
Hughie Fury, cousin of world champion Tyson, will be in action against Mariusz Wach, who lost to Dillian Whyte last year.
- Anthony Joshua v Kubrat Pulev - for WBA (Super), IBF, WBO and IBO heavyweight titles
- Lawrence Okolie vs. Nikodem Jezewski
- Hughie Fury vs. Mariusz Wach
- Martin Bakole v Sergey Kuzmin - for vacant WBC international heavyweight title
- Souleymane Cissokho vs. Kieron Conway
- Qais Ashfaq vs. Ashley Lane
Joshua v Pulev: Tale of the Band
Joshua - Pulev
Nationality: British - Bulgarian
Age: 31 to 39
Height: 6 feet 6 to 6 feet 4
Position: Orthodox - Orthodox
Reach: 82 inches - 79 inches
File: 23-1-0 - 28-1-0
KO: 21 to 14
Start: 05/10/2013 - 9/19/2009
Nickname: AJ - The Cobra
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