Anthony Joshua was left "confused" moments before Oleksandr Usyk loss

726     0
Anthony Joshua was left "confused" moments before Oleksandr Usyk loss
Anthony Joshua was left "confused" moments before Oleksandr Usyk loss

Anthony Joshua was confused and using a notepad just moments before his first defeat by Oleksandr Usyk, promoter Eddie Hearn has revealed.

'AJ' is eyeing heavyweight redemption this year after suffering back-to-back losses against recent rival Usyk, including in their Saudi Arabia rematch in August. Joshua fought with different trainers in each fight, parting ways with long-term coach Rob McCracken after the first loss to team up with Robert Garcia.

However, Joshua finds himself once again looking for a new team to corner him for a comeback fight, which is expected to take place in spring against a top 15-ranked opponent. Joshua's promoter, Hearn, has explained that the former champion was trying to take in information while working the pads in the dressing room just minutes before the maiden showdown with Usyk.

“He went into the first Usyk fight just confused, really," Hearn told The Sun when assessing Joshua's behaviour prior to his first defeat by Usyk. "I remember when he was warming up for the fight and he had a pad of notes that he and the team had put together. He would be hitting the pads and every now and again he would go over and look at the book.

"The best AJ thinks, ‘I know exactly what I am doing’. But to do that, you need a tutor. That’s why Rob McCracken was so important for him. Remember when he boxed (Wladimir) Klitschko, Rob McCracken was a big part of winning that fight, in rounds five and six. As a fighter, you have to be able to look into a trainer’s eyes and say, ‘I am in trouble here, tell me what I need to do’, not go back to your corner and have five or six voices telling you what to do.”

Eddie Hearn opens talks for Anthony Joshua vs Francis Ngannou heavyweight fight eridzriquhikeinvEddie Hearn opens talks for Anthony Joshua vs Francis Ngannou heavyweight fight

Joshua recruited Garcia from America and he began working alongside original coach Angel Fernandez at a new Loughborough base for his lucrative Middle East redemption mission.

Anthony Joshua was left "confused" moments before Oleksandr Usyk lossAnthony Joshua first lost to Oleksandr Usyk in September 2021

Do you think Anthony Joshua can become world champion again? Let us know in the comments section below!

But despite showing some notable improvement, Joshua still fell short by split decision and was unable to follow a similar route to his revenge path against Andy Ruiz Jr in 2019. The former two-time champion had already admitted that his original loss was largely down to having too many instructions being hurled into the ring from his corner.

He said between the two fights: "There was a lot going on in the corner and that didn’t help. A corner is like a pitstop. You’ve got probably 55 seconds in total to calm down, hydrate, simple instructions. Too many voices at once is definitely not good for anybody, not just me. It wasn’t like, ‘take the fight to this f***** , listen you’re losing the fight’, no.

"I swear I thought I was. I thought I was looking like Muhammad Ali in there. I can show you sparring footage where I’m on the ropes leaning. I thought, at that stage, I was well in the fight because it didn’t seem like there was any real communication as to where I’m at."

Ben Davies

Print page

Comments:

comments powered by Disqus