Joshua vs. Klitschko II: Hearn says Nigeria a frontrunner to host
Hearn, 38, all but confirmed AJ would step back into the ring with Dr Steelhammer later this year in an interview with Boxing News earlier this week.
And with the eyes of the world now watching Joshua’s every move after unifying the WBA, IBO and IBF belts with victory over Klitschko, fans have been clamouring for more details about the champ’s next fight.
“I think Nigeria is probably one of the frontrunners,” Hearn told iFL TV. “People have this perception that Nigeria is a place that makes fire by rubbing twigs together. It’s a very powerful economy with a huge middle-class sector and actually, it’s a country that has a number of major events already – particularly pop music concerts. Joshua, who lived briefly in Nigeria as a child, once attempted to represent the west African nation at the 2008 Olympics but was rejected.
“When you are in sport you become a representation of people,” the 27-year-old said earlier this year. “I’ve got it [an outline of Nigeria] tattooed on my arm, so people can relate to me. I don’t know if [a fight there] will happen.” But Hearn certainly seems a little surer.
“The infrastructure is there,” the Matchroom Promotions chief continued. “Obviously it’s difficult for us because there’s never been a major fight before – but that’s challenging. I like that.”