Anthony Joshua to fight Eric Molina on December 10

01/11/2016 17:51

IBF heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (17-0, 17 KOs) will make the second defence of his title against Eric Molina (25-3, 19 KOs) on December 10 at the Manchester Arena.

The 27-year-old Briton won the IBF title when he knocked out Charles Martin in the second round in April and defended the belt aganist Dominic Breazeale, scoring a seventh-round TKO win in June.

Joshua was hoping to fight former world champion Wladimir Klitschko next, but those plans were pushed back to next year in order to allow more time to finalize and promote the mega-fight, in addition to Klitschko suffering a mild calf injury, and Joshua will instead meet Mexican American Molina, 34, who will be fighting for a world title for the second time.

Molina challenged Deontay Wilder for the WBC title in June 2015. He rocked Wilder, but eventually got knocked out in the ninth round.

 In his last fight, Molina stopped former cruiserweight and light heavyweight world champion Tomasz Adamek in the 10th round in April.

Joshua said: "I am pleased that everything is now set for December 10 and I can concentrate on getting the business done in the ring. There has been plenty of talk about who I may face but all I'm doing is concentrating on finishing Molina in style and putting on a great show.

"Every fight is dangerous in this division and this is no exception. I saw Molina have a great fight with Wilder and he is now coming off a strong KO win against Adamek in Poland. I'm expecting this to be the toughest fight of my career so far and I will be ready for an all-out war."

Molina said: "There is no heavyweight in the world that has bounced back like I have. That's the man that Joshua faces on December 10 and that man is a very dangerous one. He'll fight the toughest Molina that anybody has ever seen, just like Adamek fought the toughest Molina.

"I'm confident. These type of fights don't shake me up. I'm a very strong mental fighter. I know exactly what I've got to do to prepare myself in the amount of time. I know exactly what I've got to do, mentally, physically, to go there and perform. When you walk out into the atmosphere, half the battle is the mental battle, and if you can stay in the moment mentally you have a shot in any fight."

Also on the card, Dillian Whyte defends his British heavyweight title against London rival Dereck Chisora. The bout is also an eliminator for a mandatory shot at the WBC title.

WBA super flyweight champion Luis Concepcion will be defending his belt aganist British contender Khalid Yafai.

Former WBA super bantamweight champion Scott Quigg will face an opponent to be determined, in a featherweight bout.

Hosea Burton will defend his British light heavyweight title against Frank Buglioni and women's amateur star Katie Taylor is scheduled to box for the second time as a professional.

Cuban heavyweight Luis Ortiz, who fights Malik Scott on November 12 in Monte Carlo, could also be in action.