Next year promises to be another season of spectacular action inside the boxing ring with the possibility of many of the heavyweight names in the sport facing some of the highly rated challengers.
This past year has seen the likes of Anthony Joshua being humbled on his US debut by Mexican star Andy Ruiz Jr in June, resulting in him losing his WBA [Super], IBF, IBO, WBO titles.
Succumbing to his first pro defeat, Joshua worked tirelessly for six months and managed to regain lost glory in the rematch against Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia earlier this month, thus becoming a two-time unified heavyweight champion.
AJ slimmed down for the bout against Ruiz Jr and his tactics during the fight were duly commended by pundits and fans across the globe after the conclusion of 12 gruelling rounds of boxing.
However, former boxer Ricky Hatton has a word of advice for the Brit ace regarding his weight and strength conditioning.
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Hatton gave AJ the credit for grinding out the victory against his Mexican counterpart – although travelling fans were somewhat critical of the performance to some extent.
The 41-year old wrote for The Sun: “I can understand why some of Anthony Joshua’s mainstream or crossover boxing fans would have been disappointed with the style of his Andy Ruiz rematch win. Especially the ones who went all the way to Saudi Arabia for a sun tan, couldn’t get a pint but got soaking wet watching a terrible fight in the rain!
“But most boxing fans will know AJ had to box a very sensible fight to get the win. I always wanted to put on a show and impress my fans but a fighter’s main job is getting the win, through any way necessary.”
Hatton branded two of AJ’s bouts as ‘dull fights’ – the one against Joseph Parker for the WBO belt and the latest one being against Andy Ruiz Jr.
“We must be fair to AJ, he has only been in two dull fights, one against Joseph Parker to win the WBO title and then against Ruiz to get all three of his titles back, we should all let him off,” he added.
The Mancunian asserted that Joshua invariably has to bulk up his physique in order to be at par with the likes of Fury or Wilder in the coming year.
He [AJ] needed to slim down for speed and movement but for me his best attributes are still his strength and size and we will need to bulk up again if he goes up to face the giant guys like Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder.
“But he has a mastermind in his corner in Rob McCracken, overseeing it all, so they don’t need me to tell them they will need to improve on that second Ruiz performance to kick on again.”
Fury has parted ways with trainer Ben Davison recently and it remains to be seen if a possible bout against AJ will be in the reckoning after the rematch against Wilder in February 2020.News Now - Sport News