Joshua-Klitschko: Boxing gods conspire against Sunderland's Josh Kelly

Respect to the very end: Wladimir Klitschko (right) and winner Anthony Joshua

Respect to the very end: Wladimir Klitschko (right) and winner Anthony Joshua

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Two heavyweight greats lit up up Wembley Stadium, but boxing's gods conspired against Josh Kelly.

Time defeated the Sunderland sensation on the biggest night of boxing seen at a British venue.

Kelly admitted on Friday that he was in the lap of the boxing gods as to whether he would even get to climb into the ring on the undercard ahead of the Anthony Joshua-Wladimir Klitschko heavyweight title showdown.

The 23-year-old was lined up to fight Exeter's Faheem Khan in his second pro appearance following a superb debut in Glasgow earlier this month.

Kelly v Khan was listed as what the boxing promoting and TV fraternity label as a 'floater', a bout to squeeze in to fill a gap on Sky's pay-per-view show. Alas, time was not on his side.

With the Klitschko and Joshua ring walks set for 9.35pm ahead of a big fight start time of just after 10pm, Kelly needed some early finishes in the early fights to get him a slot.

Joe Cordina gave his hopes a shot in the arm with a first round stoppage of Sergej Vib in the opening bout at Wembley Stadium and Katie Taylor halted Nina Meinke in round seven of their WBA Inter-Continental lightweight title and world eliminator.

Luke Campbell also finished inside the distance against Darleys Perez, but only in the ninth and when Scott Quigg went the full 12 rounds against Viorel Simion and finished after 9pm, the writing was on the wall for Kelly.

It will have been frustrating for Kelly but only an interruption on his own route to glory at the SSE Hydro Arena in Glasgow.

In THE big one at Wembley, Joshua climbed off the canvas to produce a dramatic late win over Klitschko.

The 27-year-old appeared to be on the brink of his first defeat when he was floored in the sixth, but staged a massive onslaught to halt the veteran in the 11th round to retain his IBF crown and add the WBA title..