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    Anthony Joshua confirms new elite trainer as only man to coach two multi-world champions for Jermaine Franklin fight

    ANTHONY JOSHUA has officially announced Derrick James as his new head coach.AJ parted company with Robert Garcia – who replaced his former long-time trainer Rob McCracken – shortly after his second successive defeat to Oleksandr Usyk last August.
    Anthony Joshua will face Jermaine Franklin at the O2 on April 1Credit: MATCHROOM BOXING
    Joshua parted company with coach Robert Garcia after his second loss to Oleksandr UsykCredit: PA
    Joshua will be trained by Derrick James for his clash with FranklinCredit: INSTAGRAM@DERRICKDJAMES1
    The Watford warrior shopped around for a new head coach in America last year and briefly worked with James – the trainer of Errol Spence and Jermell Charlo.
    And James’ appointment as the main man in Joshua’s corner was confirmed on Wednesday in the announcement of his clash with Jermaine Franklin.
    An excerpt of the press release read: “Anthony Joshua (24-3, 22 KOs) fights at The O2 in London for the first time since 2016 as he begins life under the tutelage of new head trainer Derrick James.”
    Joshua’s involvement with Franklin was by no means a secret as the pair were spotted together in several social media snaps.
    Joshua, 32, will look to pick up the pieces of his career against hard-hitting American Franklin at the O2 Arena on April 1.
    The fight will be his first since his back-to-back defeats to pound-for-pound king Usyk and he’s keen to turn in a good display for his new coach.
    The former two-time unified heavyweight champion said: “I want to put on a show and impress my coach as he has high standards.
    “Franklin has a good style and a great attitude, which he has shown in recent fights.
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    He added: “Mentally and physically I feel ready.
    “I’m looking forward to stepping back into the ring on April 1.”
    Franklin, 29, said: “I’m ready to show the world why it’s time for me to take my place at the top of the Heavyweight division.
    “Joshua had his time.  It’s my time to shock the world!
    “This fight isn’t going to the judge’s card. I will have win number 22 come April 1.
    Credit: SUNSPORT
    🥊 Anthony Joshua vs Jermaine Franklin – Date, live stream, TV channel and all you need to know about heavyweight bout
    “That ain’t no April Fool’s joke.”
    Defeat to Franklin could bring about the end of Joshua’s career, with promoter Eddie Hearn admitting: “You go into that fight in April and you know that defeat, it’s all over, really.
    “It would be a third back-to-back defeat and yet a great performance and a showroom knockout will get everyone saying, ‘We’re back, baby.’
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    “That’s what I can’t wait for because I love it when our backs are against the wall.
    “I’m excited. I’m really excited. This is the most excited I’ve been in Joshua’s journey so far.” More

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    Francis Ngannou agrees to Tyson Fury fight in cage with Mike Tyson as special guest referee in bizarre clash

    FORMER UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou has accepted Tyson Fury’s calls for a hybrid boxing match.The Gypsy King is willing to box the Cameroonian in 4oz gloves should his undisputed heavyweight title fight with Oleksandr Usyk fail to come to fruition.
    Tyson Fury called out Francis Ngannou for a hybrid boxing match last monthCredit: ESPN
    The former UFC heavyweight champion has accepted Fury’s termsCredit: GETTY
    The Predator is willing to let boxing legend Mike Tyson referee the fightCredit: INSTAGRAM@HOTBOXINPODCAST
    And The Predator has no qualms with Fury’s ruleset for a freak show fight – which he wants to be reffed by boxing legend Mike Tyson.
    Ngannou agreed to the WBC heavyweight champion’s stipulations for the bout on Twitter, posting a tick next to each of the requirements.
    Before signing off the quote tweet as the ‘Baddest Man on the Planet’, he asked Fury: “What else?”
    Fury revealed his willingness to face vicious knockout artist Ngannou last month while lamenting the delay in finalising his historic clash with Usyk.
    He said: “If the contract doesn’t get signed with Usyk next for the fight of the century in boxing, then we’ll do the Ngannou fight.
    “If these fellas don’t come up and sign the contract for the big fight, then we’re moving on to greener pastures.”
    Ngannou, 35, officially became a free agent last month after failing to come to terms over a new contract with the UFC.
    And the former refugee is confident a shock fight with the undefeated Fury could materialise.
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    He told Canal Afrique: “Let me remind you that Tyson Fury and I have been warming up on social media for more than two years.
    “Obviously, we all need this fight. It’s been long enough.
    “Hopefully we have the possibility of dotting the I’s.”
    He will likely, however, have to wait to get his hands on Fury is seemingly on course to face Usyk in April.
    Promoter Frank Warren said: “The fight will 100% take place on the last Saturday in April.
    “Where it takes will be determined within the next six or seven days.”
    “If we can’t do what we’re being asked to for Tyson and Usyk, then the fight will take place in the UK and we’ll have time to promote it and so forth.”
    “If it goes to the Middle East, it’s because they will pay a premium for the World Cup of boxing.” More

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    Meet Jermaine Franklin, Anthony Joshua’s next opponent who used to make insulation wool and lived with his gran

    JERMAINE FRANKLIN was making insulation wool for a roofing firm last year and now holds the key to Anthony Joshua not stuffing up his career.After much hype and big-battle rumours, 33-year-old AJ has selected the 29-year-old American to be his comeback opponent on April 1 – no joke – at Wembley Arena.
    Jermaine Franklin used to make insulation wool prior to his boxing careerCredit: Getty
    Franklin faces Anthony Joshua on April 1Credit: Instagram / @989_assassin
    Anthony Joshua’s career could be over if he loses to Jermaine FranklinCredit: Getty
    Because Eddie Hearn insisted his star attraction and London 2012 legend would not accept a gimme-comeback.
    He even suggested a Dillian Whyte rematch – but this will underwhelm fans.
    Even though Franklin took Whyte the distance in November – where he lost a close decision – he proved he is desperately short of fitness and power and will pose little-to-no-threat to the Joshua rebuild.
    Thankfully, the hard-working Michigan man will earn life-changing money that will keep one of those snug roofs over his and his family’s head for many years.
    In the build-up to his Whyte loss, where he pushed the Body Snatcher too close for comfort with frequent but zip-free digs, Franklin said: “Every fight helps, every payday helps.
    “It’s not just one, it is all of them.”
    When he was still a child growing up in the deprived-but-proud city of Saginaw, he moved into live with his grandmother Bernice, helping her around the home as she struggled with mobility. 
    It seems he has always been fighting for his family and his community and now he has three children of his own, the cause has never been more important.
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    Credit: SUNSPORT
    🥊 Anthony Joshua vs Jermaine Franklin – Date, live stream, TV channel and all you need to know about heavyweight bout
    “I moved in to help my granny out when I was still in high school,” he revealed. “To take care of her.
    “That’s my grandmother so I can never just let her go without, it’s got to be done.
    “That’s some of the things boxing has given me; how to control my temper and how to stay focused.
    “My community has always supported me, even though it was a little rough growing up. But every area has a rough area so we just overcome as much as we can.
    “We all hit that wall sometimes but they help me and push me.”
    Franklin could have made some very easy money when he last visited the UK by acting up and making a name for himself.
    He could have talked trash and put his high-heeled boots up on the press conference table, like Jarrell Miller did when he visited to sell a doomed AJ fight.
    He could have labelled himself a “king” like Charles Martin did before he surrendered his world title to AJ on 2015, ending one of the worst reigns in the history of the division.
    He could, like so many metaphorically and literally hungry fighters, have made a spectacle of himself.
    A pantomime villain to secure himself a recurring role in a series of soap opera shows.
    Instead, in both the build-up and the painful fall-out when he was on the harsh side of an away decision, he kept his cool and his class and helped get himself another fight.
    But this is no overnight success, he has been grafting – as both an opponent and a sparring partner – for almost a decade.
    Franklin said: “Everyday is a grind. Some days you wake up tired and cramping and it feels like you are fighting yourself, really. But I make it happen.”
    His lack of knockout power means boxing intelligence is essential and he has been showing ring smarts for as long as he has been on the periphery of the big stage.
    In 2019, when asked to evaluate the division’s biggest hitters, he said of Joshua, who was yet to lose to Andy Ruiz Jr and Oleksandr Usyk: “AJ can punch but he will always be tired after about six or seven rounds.
    “He will always punch himself out. All of those big guys are the same.”
    But Franklin prefers to use his dialogue for something much more respectable.
    He said: “I don’t pray for success. If you want success you have to go out and get it.
    “I pray to God to thank him for the chance to go out and get my success and giving me the life that I already have.
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    “Prayer has always been a big part of what I am doing.”
    With God in his corner, he might be more dangerous than Team Joshua thinks.
    Anthony Joshua (left) is heavy favourite to beat Jermaine FranklinCredit: PA
    Jermaine Franklin (right) lost to Dillian Whyte in November 2022Credit: PA More

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    Anthony Joshua vs Jermaine Franklin tale of the tape: How two heavyweight rivals compare ahead of comeback fight

    ANTHONY JOSHUA will bid to return to the win column in a must-win showdown with rising heavyweight Jermaine Franklin.The former two-time unified heavyweight champ will throw down with the American at the O2 Arena on April 1.
    Anthony Joshua will throw down with Jermaine Franklin on April 1
    Joshua will look to rCredit: GETTY
    How the two hard-hitting heavyweights compare ahead of their showdownCredit: SUNSPORT
    AJ will look to start rebuilding his career with a win over the Michigan mauler following back-to-back defeats to pound-for-pound king Oleksandr Usyk.
    Defeat would be curtains for Joshua’s hopes of challenging for a world title again – making his return to the O2 a must-win affair.
    So with that in mind, SunSport thought it’d only be right to break down the dust-up.
    Father Time is on the side of Franklin, who is on the right side of thirty at 29.
    Watford warrior Joshua is nearly four years Franklin’s senior at 33 – although he’ll turn 34 in October.
    AJ has the edge over Franklin when it comes to experience as he turned pro two years earlier than his upcoming foe.
    The golden boy of British boxing has had 27 professional bouts since winning gold at London 2012 – coming out victorious 24 times.
    Franklin, who turned pro in April 2015, has taken to the ring 22 times as a professional.
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    Joshua will have a height and reach advantage over Franklin, standing at 6’6 in comparison to the 6’2 ‘989 Assassin’.
    AJ’s reach is 82 inches, while Franklin’s arms extend out 77 inches.
    Franklin will likely be heavier on fight night – despite being the smaller man.
    Musclebound Joshua tipped the scales at 17 stone and one pound for his Saudi showdown with Usyk last August.
    Franklin weighed in at a mammoth 18 stone, three pounds for his closely-contested clash with Dillian Whyte last year.
    Joshua is currently on the worst run of his title-filled career thanks to his back-to-back defeats to Usyk, who is gearing up for an undisputed showdown with Tyson Fury.
    Franklin, meanwhile, suffered the first loss of his professional career – albeit a controversial one – to Whyte last November.
    Prior to that, he was riding a 21-fight win streak – which included 14 knockout victories. More

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    Roy Jones Jr to make boxing return aged 54 and take on UFC hero Anthony Pettis in bizarre eight-round professional clash

    ROY JONES JR is set to return to the ring to take on ex-UFC star Anthony Pettis.The fight is set to be the main event on a pay-per-view card promoted by Jorge Masvidal’s Gamebred Boxing.
    Roy Jones Jr has not fought professionally since 2018Credit: Getty
    Anthony Pettis is a former UFC Lightweight championCredit: Getty
    The event is being organised by UFC star Jorge Masvidal
    And it is one of several match ups that will see boxers clash with MMA fighters including Jose Aldo and Vitor Belfort.
    Jones, 54, is set to fight Pettis in an eight-round clash that will take place on April 1 at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
    The former four-division champion has not entered the ring since taking on Mike Tyson in an exhibition bout in November 2020.
    And he last fought professionally in February 2018 when he beat Scott Sigmon.
    Pettis has never boxed and his last MMA fight was in August, suffering a second defeat in a row to Stevie Ray.
    The 36-year-old was UFC Lightweight champion between 2014-25 but left the organisation in 2021.
    Event organiser Masvidal revealed he has always been a fan of Jones and was keen to work with the boxing legend.
    He told the MMA Hour: “I’ve always been a fan of Roy Jones
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    “Always wanted to work with Roy Jones in some capacity. He’s going to be fighting someone that inspired me in my career numerous times. WEC champion, UFC champion, I think both his wins for the UFC title were finishes.
    “[Pettis] has knockouts and finishes at 145, 155, 170, it’s crazy what this guy has done in his career in MMA. Great striker.
    “He agreed to fight the walking, living legend, the pound-for-pound king, one of the best fighters, athletes, I’ve ever seen in combat sports, period, versus Anthony Pettis.” More

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    Tyson Fury makes his prediction for Tommy Fury fight with Jake Paul and reveals how he thinks clash will pan out

    TYSON FURY has made his prediction for how he thinks his brother Tommy’s long-awaited fight with Jake Paul will unfold.The celebrity boxing rivals are in camp after announcing the latest rescheduling of their bout, on February 26 in Saudi Arabia.
    Tyson Fury believes Tommy Fury will wear down Jake PaulCredit: Instagram @tommyfury
    He thinks the ‘Problem Child’ will be stopped late on in the fightCredit: Getty
    Paul, 26, has set up shop in Dubai, just 700 miles away from the scene of the pay-per-view fight in Riyadh.
    Meanwhile Fury, 23, has been training in Bolton at the Elite-Boxing in Bolton, headed up by head coach Alex Matvienko.
    And he welcomed Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship star Danny Christie through their doors to spar this week.
    WBC heavyweight champion Fury, 11 years the senior of Tommy, is adamant his sibling will be too good for “The Problem Child” and will wear down and eventually stop his rival.
    He told IFL TV: “I don’t think it’s going to be a one round, two-second knockout, one punch type of job.
    “I think he’ll wear him down. [It’s eight rounds], so I think Tommy can wear him out and stop him later on in the last few rounds.
    “As soon as Tommy hits him with some hard punches, I want to see what Jake Paul’s made of.
    “Because when Tommy hits me with hard punches and big gloves on, it hurts me.
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    🥊 How to watch Jake Paul vs Tommy Fury: Date, UK start time, live stream, TV channel
    “I know Jake ain’t as tough as me or as big as me so he’s definitely going to be feeling pain, a lot of it.”
    This is the THIRD time that Tommy – who won the hearts of the nation and Molly-Mae Hague on hit show Love Island – and Paul have attempted to get it on in the ring.
    The Brit was forced to pull out twice before due a rib injury and US visa issue.
    And Paul has recently claimed that his rival missed his chance of success as he stands primed to end it all with a KO. More

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    ‘They know there’s a cost of living crisis, right?’ – Boxing fans fume at DAZN price to watch Anthony Joshua fight

    FANS have been shocked at the price it will cost to watch Anthony Joshua fight Jermaine Franklin.The Brit will make his comeback against the American on April 1 at the O2 Arena in London.
    Anthony Joshua will return to the ring in AprilCredit: PA
    He will be fighting Jermaine Franklin (left) and it will be streamed on DAZNCredit: PA
    It will be his first fight since he lost his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk back in August.
    The bout will be shown live on DAZN in the UK.
    However, the monthly price to subscribe to the service has jumped from £7.99 to £19.99 per month.
    Joshua’s promoter, Eddie Hearn has a partnership with DAZN and promoted what is coming up this year in a tweet captioned: “No PPV (Pay Per View). Just a small taster of what is to come in 2023.”
    This has left many fans of the sport fuming with them taking to social media to vent their frustrations.
    One tweeted: “The cheek to say no PPV when the subscription fee to Dazn has just gone up.”
    A second commented: “Going to a supermarket to decide on whether to buy these eggs or get a DAZN monthly subscription is not the executive decision I’m prepared to be making in 2023, got dang it.”
    A third wrote: “They know there’s a cost of living crisis right?
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    “With BT I get moto GP, the footy, UFC and boxing. Sky the same plus NFL and F1. Dazn? Skye Nicholson and Turkish MMA. Bye, bye Eddie!”
    A fourth said: “Technically, it still is because you have to pay to view it on DAZN, and they have just magically increased the monthly fee to £19.99 per month, timely.”
    A fifth added: “No PPV but PPV price every month?”
    Speaking on the fight, Hearn has said: “You go into that fight in April – you know that with defeat, it’s all over, really. It would be a third back-to-back defeat.
    “And yet a great performance and a showreel knockout gets everyone saying, ‘We’re back, we’re back baby.’
    “That’s what I can’t wait for, because I love it when our backs are against the wall.
    “That’s the best moments and this is one of those moments for AJ. He wants a big fight in the summer.
    “The one that would make sense and the one that should be hopefully quite straightforward to make is the rematch with Dillian Whyte.
    “We’re open to a Deontay Wilder fight, we’re open to a Tyson Fury fight.” More

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    Anthony Joshua vs Jermaine Franklin: Date, UK start time, live stream, TV channel, undercard for AJ comeback at O2 Arena

    ANTHONY JOSHUA is BACK as he prepares to face American Jermaine Franklin in a huge comeback fight. AJ hasn’t been in the ring since he lost his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk back in August.
    Anthony Joshua lost to Oleksandr Usyk for the second time back in AugustCredit: Getty
    Dillian Whyte beat Jermaine Franklin in tight circumstances back in NovemberCredit: Getty
    The former heavyweight champ is looking to get back into title contention, however, and is starting things off with a tasty clash against Franklin.
    The Michigan-born fighter lost a narrow decision to Dillian Whyte at the tail-end of 2022, but most thought he did enough to win the fight.
    Should Joshua beat Franklin, a rematch with Whyte, who he knocked out in 2015, would be well on the cards.
    Joshua’s career is effectively on the line, however, so he can’t take Franklin lightly.
    Franklin, 29, will be looking to catapult himself into the heavyweight title picture himself, and a win over Joshua would give him some newfound fame in the US.
    Robert Garcia is no longer Joshua’s trainer, with the Brit set to partner up with Derrick James out in Texas.
    Joshua will be hoping some fresh eyes in his corner can reignite his career, with future super-fights against Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder still on his mind.
    First things first – win emphatically against Franklin and those huge match-ups will be back on.
    Most read in Boxing
    When is Joshua vs Franklin?

    Joshua’s big clash against Franklin will take place on Saturday, April 1.
    The event will be held at London’s O2 Arena.
    The fight will get underway at approximately 10.30pm UK time.
    The main card will begin at 6pm or 7pm GMT.

    What channel is Joshua vs Franklin and can it be live streamed?

    Joshua vs Franklin will be shown live on DAZN PPV in the UK.
    You can subscribe to DAZN in the UK for £7.99-a-month.
    The fight is available for live streaming on your mobile or tablet device from the DAZN app.

    How much will the fight cost?
    Joshua’s last fight against Usyk was priced at £26.99 on Sky Sports Box Office.
    Joshua vs Franklin will be on DAZN, but a price point has yet to be announced.
    Joshua vs Franklin full card
    The undercard for Joshua vs Franklin has yet to be announced.
    Check back at SunSport for all the latest news on the rest of the bill.
    What has been said?
    Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn has said: “You go into that fight in April – you know that with defeat, it’s all over, really. It would be a third back-to-back defeat.
    “And yet a great performance and a showreel knockout gets everyone saying, ‘We’re back, we’re back baby.’
    “That’s what I can’t wait for, because I love it when our backs are against the wall.
    “That’s the best moments and this is one of those moments for AJ. He wants a big fight in the summer.
    “The one that would make sense and the one that should be hopefully quite straightforward to make is the rematch with Dillian Whyte.
    “We’re open to a Deontay Wilder fight, we’re open to a Tyson Fury fight.”
    Anthony Joshua will be looking to get back to winning ways against FranklinCredit: Dan Charity
    Who is Joshua’s new trainer Derrick James?
    Joshua had Team GB coach Rob McCracken in his corner for most of his career, but that all changed before the Usyk rematch.
    AJ brought in esteemed trainer of multiple world champions Robert Garcia.
    And though Garcia did implement a more offensive game plan against Usyk, the fight slipped away from Joshua, who has now decided to make another change.
    Joshua is set to link up with James, who trains both undisputed super-welterweight champion Jermell Charlo, and unified welterweight titleholder Errol Spence Jr.
    Both men are offensive-minded, with Spence Jr especially well-versed when it comes to educated pressure-fighting.
    James won the Ring Magazine trainer of the year award in 2017, but he also had his own fighting career once upon a time.
    Read More on The Sun
    The Texan finished his career with a pro record of 27-7-1, but missed out on the chance to compete at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona.
    James is currently the only trainer in boxing to coach two fighters who hold multiple world titles.
    Derrick James (right) trains unified welterweight champion Errol Spence JrCredit: Getty More