SAND BLASTER

LONDON. – Francis Ngannou’s remarkable journey to reach the top is one of hope, courage, strength and character, and is symbolic of the fighter he is.

On Saturday, the MMA legend, now 37, will take on his greatest challenge yet in Tyson Fury in a boxing contest.

The pair will step in the ring at Boulevard Hall in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for a huge pay-per-view pay day which could land Ngannou an estimated £8 million.

It dwarfs any event he has previously fought in, but don’t expect the ex-UFC champion to be daunted.

He’s faced bigger tests in his life that prove he is as resilient as it gets.

From a tough start in Cameroon, where he worked in the sand mines for just £1.50 a day, to being homeless in Paris, his story is the ultimate tale of survival.

Francis was raised in Batie, Cameroon, by a single mum who split from his dad when he was six.

The father was a street fighter, renowned in the village for squaring up to gang members, four of five at a time, and giving them a hiding.

When he was nine, he joined his 11-year-brother by working in the sand mines.

The boys’ job was to shovel sand into piles so the men could shovel it into the back of tipping trucks. The Sun.

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