Anthony Joshua claims that he doesn’t get the respect he deserves for being a “dominant heavyweight.” The former world champion has received a lot of backlash since his loss to Oleksandr Usyk in September despite defending his titles seven times and becoming one of the most decorated heavyweights in British boxing history.
Joshua dropped his WBA (super), IBF, and WBO heavyweight titles to the Ukrainian at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium as he was widely criticised for not using his size and strength enough in the inaugural bout. AJ has been ridiculed by many well-known faces in the boxing world, with multiple jibes about his perceived lack of mental strength.
Legendary trainer Teddy Atlas stated that Joshua ‘is too good a loser’ and looks like a fighter who has ‘made too much money’ while former super-middleweight champion Carl Froch suggested that Joshua would need a ‘brain transplant’ to beat Usyk.
Responding to his critics during a recent interview with JD Sport, Joshua said: “I feel like I’m not getting looked at as someone who is a dominant heavyweight in the division. Anthony Joshua, look in the mirror, yeah, that’s me, the guy, ego and that.
He said: “I feel when I go and beat Usyk, I’ll get the credit I deserve again. And I’ll get the admiration for being a true boxing legend. I fought for the heavyweight championship in my 16th fight; I felt like it’s kind of overlooked.
“This is my 12th title fight in a row. I just feel like sometimes even though we’re selling out arenas and it’s good to be popular, I don’t really care for that stuff. I’d just want the respect in the division.”
Joshua rematches Usyk on August 20 at the King Abdullah Sport City stadium in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The fight was originally supposed to be broadcasted on DAZN – who have a broadcast deal with Joshua – but after details emerged that the Saudi hosts have control over the broadcast rights it was announced that Sky Sports had won an auction to show the fight with a £23million bid.