Saturday night was an exciting night for boxing fans as Antony Joshua fought his bitter rival Dillian Whyte for the British heavyweight title in front of a capacity crowd at London's O2 Arena.
Despite the majority of fans and pundits predicting Joshua to win via an early stoppage and to continue his impressive record of not going past three rounds, Whyte proved to be a real test for the Olympic champion, showing grit and determination throughout the bout.
The fight ended in the seventh round when Joshua delivered a savage uppercut on Whyte’s chin which ended his rivals resistance. Whyte was unable to continue and the fight was stopped with the referee Howard Foster declaring Anthony Joshua the winner of the fight via KO.
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It wasn’t all plain sailing for Joshua, however, with the Watford-born fighter having to work hard and show great fighting spirit for his victory.
There were a number of question marks over Joshua's ability that were answered on Saturday. He proved he could take a punch, with Whyte landing some solid shots during the bout, especially in the second round which wobbled Joshua and may have been costly against better opposition, however Joshua was able to weather the storm and get through the early onslaught.
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Joshua also proved he was able to go for more than three rounds. His stamina was put to the test and he was able to reach the seventh round fairly comfortably. However, Saturday night also showed that he needs more time to progress, and that he should not be rushed into a world title fight because he is simply not ready.
He got sucked into a war with Whyte during the bout which he did not need to do, neglecting his jab during the early rounds which made the fight even harder than it should have been.
An encouraging aspect of the fight is that Joshua would have learned more than he has in his previous fourteen bouts, it certainly was a learning curve and he can only improve from this. He still needs to make sure he uses his boxing brain more if he wants to become a future world heavyweight champion.
Joshua has the potential to become a long-serving heavyweight champion, but still requires more time to learn his craft before being plunged into the deep end.
Despite being KO'd, Whyte also deserves a lot of credit for his performance on Saturday; he showed he has a brilliant chin, and pressured Joshua for the majority of the fight and landed some big shots of his own. The Jamaica-born fighter proved he is good enough to be fighting at European level, and could possibly challenge for world title contention depending on how much he is able to improve over the upcoming years.
Overall, the bout was a brilliant spectacle for all boxing fans and showcased just how important the British title is.
Is Joshua ready for a world title fight? Have your say below
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