- Andy Ruiz Jnr has only fought twice since his loss to Anthony Joshua in 2019
- He is the first male heavyweight of Mexican descent to become world champion
- Listen to Mail Sport’s new boxing podcast THE HOOK – with exclusive interviews
Those still waiting for Andy Ruiz Jr.’s return should prepare for an even further delay, as the former heavyweight world champion is now out until at least the new year.
The American-born Mexican became the first heavyweight of Mexican descent to become a unified heavyweight champion when he won the WBO, IBF, IBO and WBA belts against Anthony Joshua in 2019.
However, he only held it for six months as the British boxing star recovered from a shock first professional defeat to reclaim his titles in Saudi Arabia in December of that year.
And although he has only fought twice since then, Ruiz insisted the 34-year-old’s prospects would change next year, claiming 2024 would be his year.
“I just finished work, five days post-surgery, and we are back in the gym feeling good and blessed,” he said an Instagram video.
Andy Ruiz Jr. (left) has only fought twice since Anthony Joshua regained his heavyweight belts
After defeating Joshua the first time, he became the first heavyweight world champion of Mexican descent
“I can’t wait to get back in the ring – 2024 will be my year, baby, my year, remember!”
“Had a little setback for a big comeback, but here we come, let’s do it!”
Since his doubleheader with Joshua, Ruiz has scored back-to-back points wins against Chris Arreola and Luis Ortiz.
However, due to his prolonged inactivity, he is unlikely to be able to produce the blockbuster duels he was capable of in 2019.
Reports circulated that Ruiz had challenged Deontay Wilder, but nothing came of it because the 34-year-old was asking for too much money, according to Malik Scott, the former WBC champion’s trainer.
Ruiz’s decline in popularity has led to speculation that he may be nearing the end of his boxing career.
Having pocketed a reported £8.23 million ($10 million) from fighting Joshua, he has only fought twice and therefore will not be able to command a transfer fee anywhere near that high to get into the ring climb.
Ruiz reportedly tried to organize a fight with Deontay Wilder (pictured) but was rejected