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Former Champion Warns Anthony Joshua against Francis Ngannou

Former world cruiserweight champion Johnny Nelson has offered Anthony Joshua strategic guidance as he prepares to face Francis Ngannou on March 8 in Saudi Arabia. Nelson emphasized the importance of Joshua's inside fighting game, given Ngannou's proficiency in close-range combat.



Anthony Joshua


Ngannou, a former UFC champion, has only one professional boxing match under his belt, where he faced Tyson Fury and despite dropping him, lost on points in October 2023. Nelson highlighted Ngannou's background in MMA, stating,


"Where Ngannou is coming from, he's used to getting up close and personal," suggesting that Joshua needs to be prepared for a close-quarters battle.

Nelson advised Joshua to utilize his boxing skills effectively, stating,


"If you're boxing, you've got to box long; you've got to use the jab; use the hook; set him [Ngannou] up with the shots."

He emphasized Ngannou's strength and ability to wear opponents down in close proximity, urging Joshua not to underestimate him.


Reflecting on the potential game plan, Nelson acknowledged Joshua's knockout ability but cautioned against getting into a brawl with Ngannou. He suggested that Joshua should focus on outboxing Ngannou rather than engaging in a toe-to-toe battle.


Nelson expressed his excitement for the bout, noting that Ngannou's performance against Fury has garnered respect and attention. He highlighted the significance of the fight for Joshua, as Ngannou presents one of the biggest challenges in terms of size, strength, and punching power that Joshua has faced.


As Joshua prepares for this crucial bout, Nelson's insights serve as a reminder of the strategic approach needed to overcome the formidable challenge posed by Ngannou.

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