Sunderland star Josh Kelly fights Exeter boxer on Joshua-Klitschko card

Josh Kelly
Josh Kelly
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Josh Kelly has been handed his opponent for his appearance on the biggest night of boxing in 2017.

The Sunderland boxing star will take on Exeter’s Faheem Khan at Wembley Stadium on Saturday night.

Kelly made a sparkling professional debut just two Saturdays ago when he beat Jay Byrne, from Dublin, on the undercard of the Ricky Burns v Julius Indongo world unification championship confrontation at the SSE Hydro Arena in Glasgow.

But the 23-year-old is bracing himself for something completely different this weekend – fighting in front of a capacity 90,000 crowd inside the home of English football and a worldwide TV audience of millions.

Kelly is on the pay-per-view world heavyweight championship showdown between champion Anthony Joshua and veteran challenger, Wladimir Klitschko.

But for the gifted former Team GB amateur star, it is another night at the office – he says he’s going there to work and not just to sample the incredible atmosphere.

“I have a great team around me in Adam’s gym and it’s about learning,” said Kelly. “I will listen to Adam, follow his orders, learn and get the wins. I’m on a learning curve and this is just another part of it.”

Khan is no mug, as his record proves.

The 34-year-old, born in Pakistan but now based in Devon, has won nine and drawn two of his 21 contests.

Kelly has missed out on the accolade of opening the show.

A draw to see where the three Team GB Rio Olympians would box on the bill was made by cruiserweight king Tony Bellew and promoter Eddie Hearn at a JD Sport store in London last night.

Welshman Joe Cordina will be the man to get proceedings under way.

Lawrence Okolie will be a live ‘float’ in his third pro outing after two first round KOs under his belt so far and Kelly will also float on the night in his second fight in the paid ranks.

Cordina, Okolie and Kelly are part of a historic night of action on the sold-out blockbuster battle between IBF king Joshua and former world ruler Klitschko, with the WBA and IBO straps also up for grabs.

Elsewhere, Scott Quigg faces Viorel Simion in an eliminator for the IBF featherweight title, Luke Campbell and Darleys Perez clash for the number one spot in the WBA, Irish sensation Katie Taylor faces Nina Meinke in a world title eliminator.