FAME’S NOT MY GAME
It might not be the fight the nation demanded but, for the first time in three years, Anthony Joshua will pack out a major British stadium again tomorrow night, writes DAVE KIDD.
Joshua claims he is not in the fight game for the fame, but to lift the profile of his sweet science to unprecedented levels.
That he undoubtedly did in 2017 and 2018, when we grew accustomed to AJ’s big nights out, as he slayed Wladimir Klitschko, Carlos Takam, Joseph Parker and Alexander Povetkin in front of 80,000 crowds at Wembley and Cardiff.
Since then, Joshua lost his crown to Andy Ruiz Jr in New York, won it back in a soulless desert setting in Saudi Arabia, then endured the pandemic like the rest of us before he knocked out Kubrat Pulev in front of a tiny audience at Wembley Arena last year.
At Tottenham’s magnificent new stadium tomorrow night, Joshua will put his three belts on the line in front of a 68,000 crowd against Ukraine’s former undisputed world cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk.
And Joshua, 31, said: “When I started boxing in around 2008, there was a global financial crisis and no real investment in sport, no governments were investing on boxing.
“But I committed and I worked hard and brought attention back to boxing.
“I don’t promote boxing to be famous, I do it so we can all benefit from it. I work hard to make sure boxing is a high profile, respected sport.”