What Anthony Joshua told Francis Ngannou in the ring after brutally knocking him out

Joshua and Ngannou embraced in the ring after the fight was over (Picture: Getty)

Anthony Joshua urged Francis Ngannou to stay in boxing after his destructive victory over the former UFC star.

Ngannou, a former UFC heavyweight champion and regarded as one of the hardest hitters in combat sport, made his boxing debut last October, stunning Tyson Fury by knocking him down in the third round before losing a split decision.

Taking on Joshua in his second professional fight, it was a very different story. The two-time heavyweight champion asserted his dominance from the opening bell, scoring a huge first round knockdown when he flattered Ngannou with a vicious right.

Ngannou survived to the second round when he was knocked down again. Joshua saved the best until last and with his very next shot, detonated one of his finest ever knockouts to leave the Cameroonian motionless on the canvas.

Ngannou’s performance against Fury has been viewed as one of the best boxing debuts of all-time, having gone the distance with the reigning heavyweight champion.

After Ngannou had got to his feet, he and Joshua embraced in the centre of the ring with the Olympian telling him: ‘You’re an inspiration. ‘You’ll beat a lot of people. Don’t leave boxing. Don’t leave boxing.’

Joshua added: ‘If you need anything, let me know, but we’ll speak another time.’

Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou

Joshua demolished Ngannou in two rounds (Picture: Getty)

Joshua will now hope to fight the winner of Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk, who meet in their historic undisputed title showdown on 18 May.

He may have to wait, however, with a contracted rematch meaning those two are likely to fight twice before the year is out.

While those fights will crown the heavyweight division’s first sole world champion since Lennox Lewis, Eddie Hearn insisted Joshua has now regained the no1 status in the division.

‘I’m so proud of him because there was a huge amount of pressure,’ Hearn said.

‘If we won this fight then he would fight the winner of Fury v Usyk. You’re looking at the number one heavyweight in the world.

‘On this form, there is no man that can beat him. Tyson Fury please beat Usyk because you will get the biggest fight in the history of the sport.

‘As a fighter, he’s an inspiration to young people. What I said would happen, happened. He destroyed Francis Ngannou. He’s a beast and I cannot wait for him to beat Tyson Fury.’


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