- Anthony Joshua confirmed his first fight of 2018 will be against Joseph Parker
- The Brit will defend his WBA, IBF and IBO super heavyweight titles
- The March 31 bout will take place at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff
- It is the same venue at which he defeated Carlos Takam last October
Anthony Joshua has confirmed he will defend his WBA, IBF and IBO super heavyweight titles against Joseph Parker at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium on March 31.
Joshua aims to unify the heavyweight division in 2018 and win over Parker would see him claim the WBO belt — with only Deontay Wilder’s WBC title left to win.
It will be Joshua’s first fight since he knocked out Carlos Takam in the same arena last October to earn his 20th professional win.
Anthony Joshua has confirmed he will fight Joseph Parker at Principality Stadium on March 31
‘I would like to announce the official news that myself and Joseph Parker will be fighting on March 31 at Principality Stadium in Cardiff.
‘It is a unification heavyweight championship fight. We all know what happened last time I was in a unification heavyweight championship fight – it was gruelling, it was interesting and we both left the ring with masses of respect.
‘These fights aren’t easy because there is a lot on the line, so respect to team Parker for taking the challenge. I am looking forward to it, training camp is under way and before you know it March 31 will be upon us.’
Joshua unified the WBA and IBF titles with his famous win over Wladimir Klitschko last April, before subsequently battling out a late stoppage win over Takam in Cardiff in October.
The 26-year-old Parker had made his UK debut one month previously, when he earned an underwhelming majority points verdict over challenger Hughie Fury at the Manchester Arena.
Parker said: ‘Anthony Joshua is in for a huge shock. A couple of months ago I heard him say ‘why should I be worried about this little kid from New Zealand’?
‘Well, now he’s about to find out. And the world is about to find out whether AJ can really take a punch. My entire existence is now devoted to proving what the boxing world already knows.’