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30 Nov, 2019 13:54

Ring girls dumped from Joshua vs Ruiz rematch in Saudi Arabia 'out of respect for local customs'

Ring girls dumped from Joshua vs Ruiz rematch in Saudi Arabia 'out of respect for local customs'

The rematch between Anthony Joshua and Andy Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia will be without a familiar sight for boxing fans after promoters reportedly ruled that ring girls will be absent.

Mexican-American fighter Ruiz Jr defends the world heavyweight titles he so sensationally won from Joshua earlier this year when the pair meet again at a purpose built 15,000-seater stadium in Diriyah on December 7, in an event dubbed ‘The Clash on the Dunes’. 

READ MORE: Anthony Joshua v Andy Ruiz Jr rematch confirmed for Saudi Arabia in December

Out of respect for strict local customs which require women to cover up, promoters have confirmed there will not be bikini-clad ring girls present to hold up cards in between rounds, TMZ reports.

The WWE faced a similar dilemma at its Crown Jewel event earlier this year, when it opted for more modest attire for its female athletes.

Brit fighter Joshua will be aiming to reclaim the WBO, WBA, IBF and IBO belts he so stunningly lost to 29-year-old Ruiz Jr, a short-notice replacement, at Madison Square Garden back in June.  

Joshua, 30, had been unbeaten heading into that bout but suffered a the seventh-round stoppage defeat after being put down four times.

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Both fighters are already in Saudi Arabia as they gear up for one of the biggest boxing events the region has ever hosted.