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Joshua: I’ve never ducked a fight, Wilder matchup could still happen

Anthony Joshua insists he has never ducked a difficult fight and has refused to rule out a possible matchup with Deontay Wilder after he faces Francis Ngannou.

Joshua will meet mixed martial arts star Ngannou – who pushed Tyson Fury close on his professional boxing debut last October – in Saudi Arabia on March 8.

The Brit was initially set to face Wilder this year, but the American suffered a surprise defeat to Joseph Parker in December, leaving those plans in tatters.

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While fans have long called for Joshua to take on either Wilder or WBC heavyweight champion Fury, the 34-year-old says he has done his part to make those bouts happen, only for outside factors to prevent them from taking place.

“I’ve signed to fight Fury, I’ve signed to fight Wilder, I’ve signed to fight a lot of people. I just do good business. I’m a good prizefighter, I don’t duck a challenge,” Joshua told Sky Sports.

“I’m always up for it. I just feel within myself I’ll always be here and ready to fight any time.”

On his agreement to fight Wilder, Joshua added: “It was annoying in a way because we met up, we spoke to lawyers, we signed the contracts, all that good stuff.

“It’s a fight where everything was signed and sealed. It just needed both of us to deliver, and he didn’t meet his end of the bargain.

“It’s a fight that fans want to see. I’m not saying it’s completely written off.”

Joshua will be seen as the firm favourite when he steps into the ring with Ngannou in Riyadh, but after seeing the former UFC heavyweight champion go toe-to-toe with Fury, Joshua is taking nothing for granted.

“He had a good outing against Tyson Fury who is the current WBC champion. So I think it will be good for me to see where I’m at,” Joshua said of his upcoming bout.

“You should always overestimate people, if you want my opinion. Never underestimate anyone, always overestimate people and that way you’ll never be surprised.”

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