Oleksandr Usyk will defend his heavyweight titles against former unified champion Anthony Joshua this Saturday in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
The fight takes place at The King Abdullah Sports City arena, a venue located north of the city and roughly 13km away from the Red Sea.
British boxing stalwart Mike Goodall recently posted a video from his own Twitter account showing some of the behind the scenes work being carried out at the venue for Saturday’s mammoth fight.
King Abdullah Sports City , air conditioned 12000 seat venue for next Saturdays (20/8)Heavyweight Championship of the World @usykaaa v @anthonyjoshua .. shown live on @SkySportsBoxing in UK @MatchroomBoxing @dazngroup @k2promotion pic.twitter.com/tFe4DA3Okl
— Mike Goodall (@MGmrboxing) August 13, 2022
The site does have some history with boxing. It was the original home for the World Boxing Super Series: Cruiserweight final between Usyk and then unified champion Murat Gassiev. That fight got postponed and shifted to Moscow, Russia when Usyk suffered an elbow injury.
The first fight to ever be hosted by the venue ended up being the super-middleweight clash between George Groves and Callum Smith. Usyk-Joshua will be the second ever fight hosted at this arena.
King Abdullah Sports City, named after the previous Emir of Saudi Arabia, is a multi-use stadium in addition to being a sports city. Mainly used for football, it has also hosted WWE and athletics events in the past.
Immediately outside the stadium and making up the rest of the sports city are three football fields, four small indoor arenas, six tennis courts, and a larger indoor arena that serves as a multi-purpose facility.
The bout will mark Usyk’s first fight in Saudi Arabia and Joshua’s second. Previously, Joshua had defeated Andy Ruiz to reclaim his titles at the Diriyah Arena, located towards the east of King Abdullah Sports City.
Joshua will look to repeat the success he has had in Saudi Arabia by once again trying to reclaim his titles from Usyk, who defeated Joshua at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last year.
August is one of the hottest months of the year in Jeddah, with current temperatures ranging between 30° and 38°C.
Concerns regarding how people will handle the heat can be put to rest as the venue is air-conditioned and the fight will take place during the night in Jeddah, when it is considerably cooler.