This Saturday, August 12, The O2 in London will witness a Heavyweight clash that carries a last-minute surprise. Anthony Joshua will now be facing Robert Helenius in a 12-round main event. This bout, part of an electrifying night of boxing, will be broadcast live on DAZN as part of regular subscriptions.
This unexpected matchup comes after Dillian Whyte, Joshua’s original opponent, was flagged for adverse analytical findings in a random anti-doping test by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA). Matchroom, along with other governing bodies, swiftly cancelled the fight, launching an investigation into the matter.
Fans who made pay-per-view pre-orders via DAZN can now claim refunds, making the event available exclusively through their standard subscription.
The event offers more than just the intriguing main event. Filip Hrgovic and Australia’s undefeated contender Demsey McKean will go head-to-head for a shot at the unified World Champion Oleksandr Usyk. Hrgovic’s record, along with McKean’s unblemished 22-0, suggests a fierce fight.
Derek Chisora, a name synonymous with British boxing, will return to the scene of many famous wins, taking on America’s Gerald Washington over ten rounds. Romford’s Johnny Fisher will get a shot at his first belt, facing Torquay’s Harry Armstrong for the vacant Southern Area Title.
Further on the card, Campbell Hatton, a promising Super-Lightweight, will take on Tom Ansell over eight rounds, while George Liddard aims for another knockout against Bas Oosterweghel. Wales’ rising star Brandon Scott will make his Matchroom debut, and Maiseyrose Courtney is set to face her toughest test against Bournemouth’s Gemma Ruegg.
Joshua, reflective yet focused, acknowledged the last-minute change, respecting Helenius and emphasizing his focus on the win. Meanwhile, Helenius expressed his excitement and readiness, displaying the confidence that has defined his career.
Helenius said, “I plan to make the most of it!” And so do all the fighters stepping into the ring on Saturday. May the best man win.
Eddie Hearn, Chairman of Matchroom Sport, on the Heavyweight Showdown at The O2 in London: “It’s a thrilling night of heavyweight battles at The O2, featuring Anthony Joshua squaring off against ‘The Nordic Nightmare’ Robert Helenius, standing tall at 6ft 9in. We’re gearing up for major bouts in the division, and the undercard is with the fiercest and finest heavyweights, complemented by rising stars.”
Hearn recognizes the challenges of last-minute changes but praises Joshua’s readiness: “Anthony’s determination was great. ‘I’m ready to fight on Saturday.’ We owe our gratitude to DAZN, our broadcast partner, for making this event accessible without Pay-Per-View. It’s extraordinary value for fight enthusiasts, and we’re all eager for Saturday’s action.”
Anthony Joshua: “This undercard means a lot, and everyone’s hard work is a responsibility I share. These obstacles, like late replacements, have become familiar, but they’re mere stepping stones on my journey.”
His focus remains unwavering: “I must stay true to my principles and strive for victory. The essence of boxing doesn’t allow for delays, so I must be at my peak to succeed.”
On the impact of COVID-19 and staying active, he notes: “The pandemic was tough on all of us, but now it’s time to regain momentum. I’ve committed to continuous improvement through intensive ring work and combat training in Dallas.”
Expressing respect for Helenius, Joshua adds: “I won’t underestimate anyone, including Robert. He’s here to win, and we’re here to entertain. The card is astonishing, a nod to the vintage nights at The O2. We aim to provide an unforgettable night of boxing.”
Derrick James, Joshua’s Trainer, Provides Insight: “It’s about progression. Robert is skilled, and you’ll witness AJ’s application of our training. We’ve had more time to adapt to Robert’s height difference. The transition from one opponent to another within a week showcases our flexibility.”
Robert Helenius (32-4, 21 KOs) Talks About Fighting Anthony Joshua: Expressing gratitude for the chance, Helenius says: “This sudden opportunity changed my vacation plans, but we’re ready. I respect Joshua as a formidable opponent. I’ve been pursuing the World Title for 15 years, and I’ll give everything to seize victory. This battle will be grand.”
Tickets for the original fight remain valid. If any ticketholders prefer a refund, it’s available through the original point of purchase.
For the global fanbase eager to witness the bout, DAZN ensures accessibility. Existing subscribers of the sports streaming service will be able to watch Joshua vs Helenius live and exclusively as part of their regular DAZN subscription. The fight will not be tucked behind a Pay-Per-View wall, reinforcing DAZN’s commitment to making top-tier sports events accessible.
If you’re new to DAZN, it’s a simple process to get on board. Subscriptions start at just £9.99 per month, and signing up is an uncomplicated process at DAZN.com. Once registered, all that’s left is to search for ‘DAZN’ on your preferred device’s app store and download the app. The service is available on a variety of platforms, from smart TVs and streaming devices to game consoles, mobile, and tablet.
For those with Sky, watching Joshua vs Helenius is just as straightforward. Through Sky Q or Sky+ HD box, you can easily tune into DAZN 1 HD channel 429, or simply go to DAZN.com/Sky to begin.