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Page 45 stories Joshua wants to defend his heavyweight title in Nigeria He’s dominated everyone he’s come up against in the UK, but it’s not…

Page 45 stories

Joshua wants to defend his heavyweight title in Nigeria

He’s dominated everyone he’s come up against in the UK, but it’s not enough. Anthony Joshua, and his promoter Eddie Hearn, want to go global.

And much like one of his heroes Muhammad Ali, Joshua wants one of those fights to take place in Africa – specifically in Nigeria, where his heritage lies, or Ghana.

“It’s been done before. It made massive news and was history. I think that would be massive. I would not turn that opportunity down,” AJ told the Mirror.

“I’d like it to be in Nigeria or Ghana. Either one is good for me, anywhere. There’s no way I wouldn’t fight there. It would be class, the whole history of it. It would work.”

Hearn has plans for Joshua to fight in America, “certainly”, but also China, Dubai, Australia, Japan. “It would be groundbreaking,” he said.

For now the IBF heavyweight champion is taking some time out, after a hectic six months that saw him defeat Dillian Whyte, win the championship, and then defend that championship at a sold-out O2. Some down time is well deserved.

Rangers our biggest threat to league title – Maikaba

Wikki Tourists FC coach, Abdu Maikaba has said that Enugu Rangers are the biggest threat to the Bauchi club’s ambition to clinch a first-ever championship this season.

Both teams clash again on Sunday in a high-profile top-of-the-table clash after second-placed Rangers won the reverse fixture 1-0 at home in the first stanza of the league.

Wikki top the 20-team table with 41 points from 23 matches, two points ahead of Rangers.

“Rangers will be the biggest threat to our ambition to be champions,” Maikaba told AfricanFootball.com.

“They have a good team, play good football and like my team, they parade a good number of young players.

“When we first clashed in Enugu, both coaches agreed that one of us will be champions.”

The highly-rated Wikki coach, who has also worked at Enyimba and Kano Pillars, has therefore said a win against Rangers on Sunday is crucial to their title aspirations.

“It is very, very important that we win this game because it is a match between the two top teams in the league,” he said.

“A win will consolidate our leadership of the table and also boost our chances to go all the way to win the league.”

Rangers have demanded Sunday’s showdown be televised live on television and it is a request Maikaba will also gladly welcome.

“We have always wanted our matches to be live on TV because not being on TV has denied my players many opportunities like being noticed by national team selectors,” he said.

“If our games were more often on TV, everyone would now know why we are on top of the league table.”

Kick-off time at the Tafawa Balewa Stadium in Bauchi is 4pm on Sunday.

Murray races into Wimbledon third round

British number one Andy Murray beat the in-form Yen-Hsun Lu in straight sets to reach the third round at Wimbledon.

The Scot came through 6-3, 6-2, 6-1 on Centre Court and goes on to face Australia’s John Millman, who beat French 26th seed Benoit Paire.

Lu, the Taiwanese world number 76, had won 11 matches in a row on grass and began with a break of serve.

However, second seed Murray responded by winning 17 of the next 20 games to seal victory in an hour and 40 minutes.

“The first set was tough,” said 29-year-old world number two Murray, who beat Lu on his way to winning the title in 2013. “There were a lot of close games.

“I managed to hang on at the end of the first set, settled down towards the end of the second, and was hitting the ball much better in third and feeling more comfortable.

“If you can win matches easily it does help because you can rest. It has been a good start. I will just try and do my best – work hard, keep my head down and hopefully have a good tournament.”

Lu only returned after elbow surgery in May but quickly found some impressive form, winning 15 of 16 matches on grass, and he began in impressive fashion.

The 32-year-old broke Murray’s serve in the opening game and impressed at the beginning and end of the first set, but could not contain Murray in full flow.

A poor drop shot from Murray offered up that early break but the same stroke would help him level at 3-3, and go on to repeatedly leave Lu flat-footed.

As Lu’s opening burst faded and his first-serve percentage dropped, Murray began to take control of the rallies, forcing two forehand errors on his way to a 5-3 lead.

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