After Anthony Joshua was masterfully knocked out by Oleksandr Usyk in September last year, the two-time world heavyweight champion was widely criticized for his performance.
AJ played to Usyk’s strengths trying to have a technical boxing match with one of the best technical fighters in the sport today.
The pair are set to meet in a rematch and Joshua has made it clear that he will change his approach and go for the knockout.
One of the biggest changes he’s made is replacing longtime coach Rob McCracken with Angel Fernandez.
Tokyo 2020 super heavyweight bronze medalist Frazer Clarke is also coached by Fernandez, who believes Joshua will be in a better position when he meets Usyk in the rematch.
“I think the loss made him better,” Clarke said. Sky Sports News. “He opened his eyes a bit. It made him mentally better. I think he knows what he has to do.
“I think he’s changed his situation, which he thinks will help him. He’s got a team of people who are dedicated to one thing, and it’s ‘AJ’ who gets the result.
“You can’t write off Usyk, he’s an amazing fighter. But I’d like to think AJ is in a place where he can continue and get this win.
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As of now, the exact venue and date for the Usyk vs Joshua rematch has not been announced, but promoter Eddie Hearn insists an announcement is imminent.
“I think there’s a very good chance you’ll see this fight on July 23 in the Middle East.” Hearn told iFL TV:
“We have received several offers from all over the world. We have been working on it and we are getting closer to this option.
“Team Usyk stressed that this is the option they would prefer because it’s obviously a lot of money.
“Quite frankly, I think the Usyk team would prefer a neutral venue and I don’t blame them for that. So that’s where we are.
“Are we announcing this week? Probably not. But do we announce next week? Almost certainly.
“You will see this fight, you will see this fight in July and you will have an official announcement soon.”