Anthony Joshua tells boxing rivals he can’t carry the heavyweight division on his own

MATT MAJENDIE
PA

Anthony Joshua insists his fellow heavyweights need to stop talking and start fighting each other.

Joshua faces a third title defence on Saturday September 22 at Wembley Stadium against Alexander Povetkin, with the prospect of an April encounter against Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury.

But the 28-year-old Londoner, who has won every one of his 21 fights, said the onus of the division should not rest entirely on his shoulders.

“I’ve got here, I’ve taken fights, I’ve taken risky fights,” he told the BBC.

“I can’t bear the burden of the division on my back alone: fight [Wladimir] Klitschko, fight Povetkin, fight Wilder, fight Fury while there are guys are not fighting each other.

“Let them fight each other. Remember they turned pro way back then so let some of them fight each other.”

(Getty Images)

Joshua has dominated the division since a momentous 11th-round stoppage against Klitschko at Wembley in April last year followed by two successful defences in Cardiff against Carlos Takam and Joseph Parker.

Having dominated the big men, he admitted the prospect of the slightly more diminutive Povetkin would throw up an entirely different challenge but that he did not expect the fight to go the distance.

“If he’s tough, he’ll be in for a proper beating,” said Joshua. “He feels like 39, by the time he leaves that ring he’ll be feeling 69.

“I’m still explosive but I’m just smarter with it. It’s about breaking your opponent down round after round.

“I have to adapt my style, I just have to be clever. But I’m sure I’ll have enough in my locker to take him out.”