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Anthony Joshua sends message to Tyson Fury with apparent gun gesture after Francis Ngannou KO

Anthony Joshua has expressed his desire to fight Tyson Fury next, having knocked out Francis Ngannou in devastating fashion on Friday.

Ex-UFC champion Ngannou made his boxing debut in October, dropping Fury in a shocking moment before losing a controversial decision. The Cameroonian did not come close to replicating that performance against Joshua, however, suffering a brutal second-round loss.

Briton Joshua, 34, dropped Ngannou, 37, in round one and did the same twice in round two. The final knockdown proved decisive, with Ngannou out cold on the canvas in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Joshua then seemed to make a gun gesture at his preferred next target, Fury, who was sat in the front row at the Kingdom Arena.

Speaking in the ring after the win, “AJ” said: “If that was me [losing], you’d be saying, ‘Joshua should retire.’ I don’t know if I’m in my peak. I’m pushing day by day, who knows where it will take me? In five years, I won’t be fighting no more, this will be a distant memory.

“I just want to fight. Yes, [the winner of Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk].”

Fury is set to box Usyk in Riyadh on 18 May, to crown the first undisputed heavyweight champion in 24 years. Fury holds the WBC title, while Ukraine’s Usyk is the unified champion.

Fury vs Usyk was originally scheduled for February, but the bout collapsed on short notice when the Briton suffered a cut over his eye.

Joshua knocked out Ngannou in round two in Riyadh (Getty Images)
Joshua knocked out Ngannou in round two in Riyadh (Getty Images)

On Friday (8 March), the unbeaten Fury said of a potential fight with Joshua: “There’s quite a long way to go, there’s always been a lot of s*** getting in the way of it. I've got bigger fish to fry – 18 May, then we have a rematch in October.

“After that, if he's still available and I'm available, let's get it on. Yes, it goes both ways; he can do what he wants, whoever he fights, he can’t wait a year. Inactivity is no good.

“After I beat Usyk, the IBF [title] will be vacant, so maybe he can fight [Filip] Hrgovic.”