Advertisement

All pressure’s on Joshua in showdown with Ruiz

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia—Heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr said Monday (Tuesday Philippine time) that all the pressure will be on dethroned champion Anthony Joshua in their contentious showdown in Saudi Arabia.

Andy Ruiz Jr
Ruiz, who was born in the United States but fights as a Mexican, caused one of boxing’s biggest upsets in New York in June when he handed Joshua a first defeat to win the WBA, IBF and WBO crowns in New York.

The pair will fight the rematch on Saturday in Diriyah, close to the Saudi capital Riyadh, in a hotly-anticipated contest dubbed “Clash on the Dunes”.

“We’ve got to see where he’s at because all the pressure is on him. The pressure isn’t on me because I followed my dream, made my dreams come true,” Ruiz said in Riyadh. 

“Of course I want more though –- I want the legacy of Andy Ruiz Jr.” 

Joshua said he was “comfortable” and “very relaxed” ahead of the rematch.

“I am just going to win. I know I can do it,” Joshua said.

“I was this close last time, so next time I won’t mess up.”

Saturday’s bout is mired in controversy. The Saudis have faced intense diplomatic fallout over last year’s murder of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the conservative kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul.

Ruiz, however, said he was “happy to be here in Saudi Arabia”.

“It feels really good. I feel at home you know. Everybody has been treating me with love and especially enjoying the really good food that they have in this country,” he said.

Activists accuse Saudi rulers of using sport as a tool to try and soften their international image.

In February, they hosted a first European Tour golf event while the world’s most grueling motor sports race, the Dakar Rally, will be held in the country in 2020. 

Topics: Andy Ruiz Jr , Anthony Joshua , Saudi Arabia , European Tour , Dakar Rally

Related stories:

No related stories matched this topic.

COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by manilastandard.net readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of manilastandard.net. While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.
AdvertisementKPPI
Advertisement