Thursday 17 August 2017

Anthony Joshua vs Wladimir Klitschko: What time will the fight start, what TV channel is it on and who will win?

Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko during the Weigh In
Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko during the Weigh In

Katie Taylor takes on Nina Meinke on the undercard but it's all eyes on Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko in the main event.

When is it?

The day is finally here! Anthony Joshua will take on Wladimir Klitschko in the fight the world has been waiting for this evening, so Saturday night.

Where is it?

IBF champion Joshua fights to establish himself as the world's leading heavyweight and to win the WBA title last held by Tyson Fury in front of an expected 90,000-strong crowd at Wembley Stadium which will be a post-war record for a fight in Britain.

What TV channel will it be on?

You can watch every punch and jab on Sky Sports Box Office. Here's how you can watch it, irrespective of whether you are a Sky customer or not.

What time is it likely to start?

Britain Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Wladimir Klitschko Weigh-In - Wembley Arena - 28/4/17 General view of preparations in Wembley Stadium ahead of the fight Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Britain Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Wladimir Klitschko Weigh-In - Wembley Arena - 28/4/17 General view of preparations in Wembley Stadium ahead of the fight Action Images via Reuters / Andrew Couldridge Livepic EDITORIAL USE ONLY.

The fight is due to begin at 10.10pm, though that is likely to change on the night depending on how the undercard fights go.

What are the odds?

The bookmakers have got Joshua pegged as the favourite:

Anthony Joshua to win: 2/5

Wladimir Klitschko to win: 15/8

Draw: 33/1

Latest news:

Wladimir Klitschko dismissed suggestions he deliberately delayed Anthony Joshua's public workout in an attempt to get under his opponent's skin.

The two heavyweights' latest attempts to promote Saturday's fight at Wembley took place in the shadow of the national stadium, at Wembley Arena.

They are expected to attract a crowd of 90,000, a post-war record for a fight in the UK, and on an evening which could define both fighters' careers Klitschko will provide Joshua with his biggest test.

The 41-year-old appears to have attempted to soften the edge Joshua possesses in the build-up to this fight by consistently being respectful of the IBF champion.

He represents a significant step up in class for Joshua, whose temperament could be tested if Klitschko leans on him throughout Saturday's fight and repeatedly ties him up in the same way he has so many others.

Klitschko's slow progress throughout his workout - in which he spent a significant amount of time getting his hands wrapped in the ring, which in theory could have been done privately - delayed Joshua's by 30 minutes.

However, asked if that had been deliberate, the Ukrainian responded: "No, that's not a mind game. I'm here, I'm ready to fight.

"You will see a Klitschko who's enjoying himself (on Saturday). I'm really enjoying myself right now, this event, and I can't wait for Saturday night.

"It's Klitschko territory from the beginning (of the fight, not just the second half)."

What are they saying?

Anthony Joshua

In the press conference to mark the announcement of the fight, Joshua insisted he was unfazed by Klitschko's reputation and his condescending comments.

“I think Klitschko’s calculated. He’s called me ‘Little Bro’ from the day we were on Ringside, on Sky Sports, when we were probably never going to fight anyway. Now he says it and we’re fighting, I let it go over my head,” said the IBF heavyweight champion.

“Klitschko’s the first champion that I’ve fought. It is no problem. And this is where the respect comes into it. It’s fine. You could let ‘Little Bro’ get to you, but I don’t let it.”

"I’m fine with all that stuff. He can call me little bro and all these things until the cows come home, and then I go and spank him out in a round it’s kind of irrelevant.

“I want longevity as a champion. I like Cristiano Ronaldo because of how long he has been around at the top level. You can’t do it once, you have to do it more,” explained Joshua.

Joshua hopes victory over the Ukrainian will mark the watershed moment and herald the start of a new era in heavyweight boxing.

“It is the start of a legacy. I think if Wlad wins, he will say to himself ‘I’m still the big bro’ but if he loses he will realise that the torch is changing hands. It is a completely different era. This is the start of, God willing - win, a new legacy, a new division of new up-and-coming champions.”

Wladimir Klitschko

Klitschko claims he is 'obsessed' with regaining the IBF belt that Tyson Fury took off him in November 2015.

The Ukrainian was set to face Fury in a rematch in Germany until the fight was postponed after the British fighter was deemed to be "medically unfit" to fight.

"The Fury defeat woke me up," said Klitschko, who has had 27 world title fights in total.

"After so many years I realised I was not as motivated. Maybe it sounds crazy, but it was good that I lost that fight and good that I'm the underdog for this one. It's nice being the challenger again. I have an adrenaline rush in my blood. I've been missing it. This time I'm obsessed."

Tyson Fury was forced to give up his IBF title to mandatory challenger, Charles Martin, who then relinquished his belt to Joshua in a knockout defeat in April of this year.

Anthony Joshua travelled to Austria to train with Klitschko in 2014 but the two-time world champion is adamant the 20 rounds they sparred together will have little bearing on the outcome of the fight.

“Any person or sparring partner that got into my training camp, getting a feeling for it, learning: it’s fine, I want people to learn from it and I’m happy to share. It’s definitely good for him, because he saw how a top athlete and champion is preparing," said Klitschko.

“He definitely adjusted it to his preparations. I think he did learn a lot. I’m also trying not to stand still, and I’ve been observing how he’s training, and how he’s getting ready, and he definitely has a professional team that works for him, to make him as strong as possible.”

Klitschko admits he is aware of the danger posed by the 27-year-old Briton and maintains he will congratulate his opponent if he wins.

“Anthony: he is more than just 18 fights. He has more than just two title defences. I truly believe in his talent, he’s an amazing athlete and a good representative for the sport.

“If he’s going to win then I’ll congratulate him, and when I win I’ll help him to come back. I’ve done it a couple of times already.”

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