Anthony Joshua’s rematch with Andy Ruiz is almost upon us and the stage has quite literally been set for this heavyweight showdown.
Joshua is bidding to win back the IBF, WBA and WBO titles in the newly-constructed Diriyah Arena in Saudi Arabia.
Incredibly, work on the 15,000-seater venue only began two months before the fight was due to commence and upon completion looks worthy of showcasing such an event.
A time-lapse video has been put together to show how the purpose-built arena, in a suburb of the Saudi capital, was built from the ground up ready to host Saturday’s action.
FROM THE GROUND UP
Take a look at how the purpose-built Diriyah Arena was constructed as it prepares to play host to #RuizJoshua2 this Saturday
— Sky Sports Boxing (@SkySportsBoxing) December 5, 2019
It has also been revealed that Saudi Arabia are planning to create a new city state with the aim of becoming a global player in the sporting industry.
The aim is to have the first section of the city, called Neom, created by 2025, with the project set to cost an estimated £400billion.
While there was speculation the Joshua vs Ruiz rematch would be in either the UK or back in America, after the first fight in June took place at Madison Square Garden, Eddie Hearn said they made a ‘wonderful decision’ to come to Saudi Arabia.
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“We were very close to going to Cardiff and were close to going back to Madison Square Garden and we even looked at Mexico,” he said.
“But we made the decision that the UK was the choice when all of a sudden I got a message saying Prince Khalid would like to speak to me about staging this historic event.
“I think it’s fair to say I was quite rude at first and told him not to waste our time.
“But the passion of this man to bring the fight to Saudi Arabia was unquestionable and in four of five days we agreed to bring the fight here.
“It was a wonderful decision.”