Anthony Joshua of Nigeria has described his opponent in the World heavy weight bout, Wladimir Klitschko as been obsessed with boxing.
Wladimir Klitschko will not give up his “obsession” with boxing after his WBA and IBF world heavyweight title fight on April 29, his opponent Anthony Joshua told dpa in an interview.
The 41-year-old former world champion will meet Joshua, 27, in his 29th championship fight at London’s Wembley stadium as the Ukrainian hopes to regain two of the belts he lost to Britain’s Tyson Fury in November 2015.
Klitschko is the second-longest reigning heavyweight champion in history after ruling the division for nine years before his loss to Fury, and there have been comments on the possibility of Klitschko’s retirement next Saturday.
“People are saying if Klitschko loses this fight he should retire but he has heard this many times before,” IBF champion Joshua told dpa.
“People were telling him to give up when he lost to Corrie Sanders but he found a determination to keep coming back and went on to rule the division for nearly 10 years.
“Klitschko is a gladiator. The man does not lose his motivation. He always has that hunger to keep going.
“Boxing is a passion and when someone threatens to take it away, you don’t lose the obsession with the sport. I doubt he will give up after this fight. People’s opinions will not dictate his decision.”
Joshua is unbeaten in 18 professional contests with all of his wins ending in a knockout or stoppage but against Klitschko, he expects the two-time world champion to get up if he falls to a heavy punch.
“If I knock him down, he will probably get up,” he said.
“It will be interesting to see how much he can take because in the heavyweight division, if you hit them hard enough times, soon they will crumble.”
Klitschko and Joshua will fight in front of a sold out 90,000 crowd in a post-war British attendance record at Wembley with a guaranteed purse of 20 million pounds (29.5 million dollars) to each fighter before ticket sales and TV revenue.
Joshua believes no bitter words need to be exchanged when the reputation of the two former Olympic champions is high.
“Some flowers just smell better than others,” said London 2012 Olympic champion Joshua.
“When there are many flowers, there are always one that blossom better and that has happened with Joshua versus Klitschko.
“Our achievements in the ring – two Olympic champions, one former champion versus the new champion has made this fight on its own merits.”
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