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Why is Joshua vs Ngannou fight in Saudi Arabia on a Friday instead of Saturday?

Anthony Joshua has said his fight with Francis Ngannou will be a “straight-out war” when they meet for their bout in Saudi Arabia.

The British boxer will need to be at his best to take on the 37-year-old former mixed martial art fighter who almost pulled off an almighty shock against Tyson Fury late last year.

French-Cameroonian Ngganou twice knocked the world champion to the floor and many thought has done enough to be given the points decision.

There is no title on the line but still a lot at stake, with the winner potentially expected to face the winner of Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk in a huge world title fight.

“All will be revealed,” Joshua said when asked about his tactics. “Just straight-out war, relentless, a good fight. That’s what everyone is here for, a good fight.”

He added: “I spar, I do my film study, all that type of stuff. I keep it professional.”

Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou weighed in on Thursday night (Getty Images)
Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou weighed in on Thursday night (Getty Images)

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It’s a fight not to be missed – but, unusually for a much-hyped match-up, it will be taking place on a Friday and not a Saturday.

Why is the Joshua vs Ngannou fight on a Friday?

The answer is, simply, to avoid a clash with another event – the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, held at Jeddah Corniche Circuit on Saturday evening.

Friday will be free practice but Saturday will be the much-anticipated qualifying session ahead of the race on Sunday.

Once more in 2024, the grand prix is set to be a night race as Max Verstappen looks to follow up his win in Bahrain with another triumph in the Gulf seven days later.