Anthony Joshua next fight: 2024 fight date, potential opponents including Ngannou, Wilder, Hrgovic

Anthony Joshua can set himself up for a blockbuster 2024 if he takes care of business against Otto Wallin on Saturday night.

Joshua and his former amateur foe Wallin top the bill on the “Day of Reckoning” in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. It is a card stacked with heavyweight talent and potential future opponents for AJ.

The 34-year-old has repeatedly stated his intention to become a three-time world champion and the heavyweight division faces an intriguing immediate future, with Oleksandr Usyk and Tyson Fury poised to meet in the first undisputed showdown this century on February 17.

Here, we look at who could be next on the agenda should Joshua get the job done against a man he beat twice in the unpaid ranks.

WATCH: Anthony Joshua vs. Otto Wallin, live on DAZN

Anthony Joshua vs. Deontay Wilder

As all roads in boxing’s glamour division head to Riyadh, it’s clear that this long-desired bout is one of the key destinations of travel. As first reported by ESPN, Wilder and Joshua have agreed to face one another back in Saudi Arabia on March 9 in the event of them each winning this weekend.

That’s no foregone conclusion, given Joshua’s patchy recent form and Wilder’s complete lack of it, having boxed one round since his trilogy defeat to Fury in 2021.

Wilder takes on Joseph Parker, the former WBO champion who lost his belt to Joshua in 2018. At that stage, Wilder and Joshua were both unbeaten and held all four heavyweight belts. Not making the bout then, especially considering the damage each man has sustained over the intervening half-decade, will forever represent a monumental wasted opportunity.

Nevertheless, it remains an intriguing contest and one that each man should be compelled to make happen before they hang up their gloves.

Anthony Joshua vs. Filip Hrgovic

For fans fixated upon finally getting Joshua vs. Wilder, the Briton’s repeatedly stated intentions over winning the world title again are a wrinkle on the landscape.

Hrgovic is the mandatory challenger for the IBF title and, if the winner of Usyk vs. Fury doesn’t face him — highly unlikely, given their rematch clause — then the belt will become vacant. Wallin is ranked No.2 with the IBF and Joshua, the organisation’s No.3, will take that spot if he beats him.

Hrgovic was recently aligned with Matchroom and it would appear to be a very simple fight to make and a fast track to Joshua’s main goal, even if it lacks the box office appeal of facing Wilder. The depleted status of a belt swiftly stripped from the undisputed heavyweight champion is probably also something for Team Joshua to consider.

MORE: Why is Ben Davison training AJ for Otto Wallin fight? Leigh Wood, Devin Haney explain unique methods

Anthony Joshua vs. Jarrell Miller

Miller blew his first shot at the big time when he tested positive for multiple performance-enhancing drugs to be ruled out of his shot at Joshua in June 2019.

AJ’s proposed US coming out party then went south at Madison Square Garden as he was dropped four times and stopped by Andy Ruiz Jr.

At both the “Day of Reckoning” launch press conference and during fight week in Riyadh, Joshua’s lingering disdain for Miller has been abundantly clear. There are reasons people like “Big Baby” end up on bills like this.

Given his rap sheet for banned substances and a moderate career resume, Miller is not here on sporting merit. But if he beats Daniel Dubois on the undercard and Joshua’s preferred options can’t immediately be secured, he will have put himself in prime position.

Jarrell Miller

Getty Images

Anthony Joshua vs. Francis Ngannou

This card wouldn’t be happening at all if it wasn’t for Ngannou. December 23 was slated as the date for Usyk to meet Fury for all the marbles.

However, after Ngannou shocked the world by depositing “The Gypsy King” onto the seat of his pants and dropping a narrow and disputed split decision, a rethink was required.

Ngannou is now big business in the heavyweight division. Joshua has spoken warmly of his efforts against Fury and any clash between the pair would be huge business. It’s also a fight that Joshua should win at a canter. Although, that’s what Fury thought…

MORE: Francis Ngannou next fight: Boxing, PFL plans for the top superstar in MMA after Tyson Fury heroics

Anthony Joshua vs. Tyson Fury

The rematch clause between Fury and Usyk means they’re probably tied up together for the vast majority of next year. However, Joshua vs. Fury remains the biggest fight in British boxing history.

After several near misses, this new era of Saudi-bankrolled cooperation in the heavyweight division could get it over the line. And, imagine a scenario where Fury wins in February and Usyk is injured. The clamour for the two long-time rivals to finally meet would become impossible to ignore.

Tyson Fury nails Francis Ngannou with the jab

Mikey Williams/ Top Rank

Anthony Joshua to retire?

Joshua told The Sporting News this week that he will leave boxing “when I’m at the bottom, when I’m getting beaten a million times”, suggesting he wants to enjoy an extended second career peak.

However, all that will go up in smoke if Wallin prevails. At the pre-fight press conference, Joshua said: “Without Saturday night, there’s no future.” He repeated this mantra after the weigh-in.

If victorious this weekend, as outlined above, the options are numerous. If he loses, it is hard to see where the most bankable stars in the sport realistically goes after a fourth career defeat.

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