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Anthony Joshua admires Tyson Fury's 'eff it mentality' in choosing to face MMA star Francis Ngannou next… but sympathises with contenders left 'massively frustrated' with the WBC champion's decision

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Anthony Joshua admires Tyson Fury’s ‘eff it mentality’ in choosing to face MMA star Francis Ngannou next… but sympathises with contenders left ‘massively frustrated’ with the WBC champion’s decision

  • Anthony Joshua admires Tyson Fury’s self-will in choosing Francis Ngannou next
  • But AJ believes he should have waited until he was no longer WBC champion
  • Fury and Ngannou box each other on October 28 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia 

Anthony Joshua believes Tyson Fury should have waited until he was no longer WBC champion before facing former UFC title-holder Francis Ngannou.

The pair square off on October 28 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in a 12-rounder under Marquess of Queensbury boxing rules.

Fury had attempted to make fights with multiple heavyweight contenders including Joshua, Oleksandr Usyk and Andy Ruiz Jr but was unable to get any of them over the line. 

The WBC, who haven’t ordered Fury to face a mandatory challenger since Dillian Whyte in April of last year, gave ‘The Gypsy King’ their blessing for him to face the Cameroonian MMA star – and so the fight was made.

Fury’s green belt won’t be on the line in the Middle East but it will be held up until he returns to defend it, leaving a string of frustrated WBC-ranked heavyweights in a state of limbo.

Anthony Joshua says he would have loved the opportunity to 'swerve his mandatory' after losing his titles to Oleksandr Usyk in 2021

Anthony Joshua says he would have loved the opportunity to ‘swerve his mandatory’ after losing his titles to Oleksandr Usyk in 2021

Tyson Fury will face MMA star Francis Ngannou in a 12-round boxing bout while still WBC champion

Tyson Fury will face MMA star Francis Ngannou in a 12-round boxing bout while still WBC champion 

Joshua sympathises with the position these fighters are left in and believes it will be ‘massively frustrating’ for many.

‘I’m not frustrated by that because I’ve been champion and I know my process and I’m on this rebuilding phase,’ Joshua said.

‘But I can understand for people waiting in line it must be massively frustrating because to become champion for some people is the be all and end all. That’s all they want to do and then they can pack up.

‘Obviously there would have been a rematch between Usyk and Fury but that could have all been done and dusted this year and the belts would have been broken up and people will have been able to get their opportunity.

‘I feel sorry for the people who want to know where they are going with their career. But Fury has to do what Fury has to do for him. 

Fury hasn't fought a WBC mandatory since Dillian Whyte in April 2022 - 'The Gypsy King' won the bout by sixth round TKO

Fury hasn’t fought a WBC mandatory since Dillian Whyte in April 2022 – ‘The Gypsy King’ won the bout by sixth round TKO

‘I admire the guy for his confidence to do what’s right for him – he has an ‘eff it’ mentality. I think we all need a bit of that in today’s society.’

When asked whether he thought the WBC should have installed a mandatory for Fury, Joshua replied: ‘Usyk was my mandatory and I ended up losing to him. 

‘I would have loved to have gone to Saudi to compete with someone else and make a s*** load of money and swerve my mandatory.

‘I would still be champion if I could do that but I didn’t get that opportunity and I had to take it on the chin. But life isn’t always fair.

‘When all is said and done it will just be part of his legacy and I think we will all forget about it sooner or later.

‘But if you want to hold him accountable then yes he should be fighting active fighters at this current time and he should waited until the end of his career, when he’s not champion anymore, to compete with MMA fighters.’