Anthony Joshua will face Jermaine Franklin when he makes his long awaited return to the ring on April 1st.
The O2 Arena in London will be the home to Joshua's first fight since he lost to Oleksandr Usyk in Saudi Arabia last August.
It will be Joshua's first fight on home soil since 2021, and his first time gracing the 02 Arena since he beat Charles Martin to win his first World Heavyweight title in 2016.
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“I'm looking forward to stepping back into the ring on April 1 at The O2 in London.” said Joshua.
“Mentally and physically I feel ready. 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. This will be my first fight broadcast on DAZN in the UK and it will be globally available on the platform.
"I want to thank DAZN for supporting both myself and the sport of boxing as a whole. I would also like to thank the team at 258 and Matchroom Boxing.”
After winning Olympic Gold in 2012, Joshua has blossomed into one of the hardest hitting punchers in the World and holds knockout wins over the likes of Kubrat Pulev, Dillian Whyte and Wladimir Klitschko.
The 33-year-old racked up a 22-0 record before finally losing to Andy Ruiz Jr at Madison Square Garden in his US debut four years ago. Since then, Joshua has won just twice, beating Pulev and Ruiz Jr in a rematch before losing back to back title bouts with undefeated Ukrainian Usyk.
Since those defeats, Joshua has split from his longtime trainer Rob McCracken and Robert Garcia. Derrick James, trainer to Errol Spence Jr and Jermell Charlo, will be in the Englishman's corner on April 1st.
Franklin is a 29-years-old and hails from Saginaw, Michigan in America. He holds a record of 21-1, with that sole blemish coming in a majority decision loss to Dillian Whyte in his last bout.
“I’m ready to show the world why it’s time for me to take my place at the top of the Heavyweight division,” said Franklin.
“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. That ain’t no April Fool’s joke.”
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