Eddie Hearn hits back at Deontay Wilder following criticism of Anthony Joshua's win v Andy Ruiz Jr

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Anthony Joshua impressed the vast majority of boxing fans with his professional performance against Andy Ruiz Jr on Saturday night.

The Brit knew that another defeat against the Mexican would leave his career in tatters, but he produced a tactical masterclass in Saudi Arabia to regain his belts.

Joshua is now a two-time world heavyweight champion and has the likes of Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk firmly in his sights once more.

Wilder, however, has been less than complimentary about Joshua’s latest victory.

The American accused AJ of running ‘around the ring’ and using Wladimir Klitschko’s ’survival’ tactics to avoid defeat.

"Joshua did what he had to do to get the win,” Wilder told The Athletic. “He ran around the ring and was on his bike all day.

"Basically, he had Klitschko in the camp and he was a lot like Klitschko: that jab-grab-hold method. That's all he did tonight.”

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He added: “Joshua's mentality was to survive. The Klitschko method.

"The difference is my mentality is that of a beast, a warrior, a king, an emperor -- all those things. If he calls himself a king, he's just on the nicer side of it.

"This is a brutal sport and that's how I treat it. I ain't showing no love for anybody in that ring."

Deontay Wilder v Luis Ortiz

Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn was unaware of those comments until being told by iFL TV presenter Kugan Cassius on Sunday.

And Hearn has now fired back at Wilder, who is poised to face Fury in a rematch early next year.

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When told that Wilder has said ’How can no-one say I’m not the best in the world now?’, Hearn replied: “What after Anthony Joshua just put on an absolutely public exhibition and schooled the world heavyweight champion?

"We spent too much energy and time talking about Wilder who, in the grand scheme of things, has just boxed in America at Las Vegas and sold 7,000 f***ing tickets and done about 100,000 buys on pay-per-view.

“No-one gives a monkey's about Deontay Wilder. Sorry, it's true."

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It seems boxing fans believe this is evidence that Hearn intends to duck Wilder…

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But in order to cement his legacy as one of the best heavyweights ever, Joshua will need to fight the likes of Wilder or Fury at some point in the future.

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