Anthony Joshua Adds Brain Training and Motivational Speeches in His Preparation for Oleksandr Usyk Rematch

Published 01/07/2022, 10:00 AM EST
Boxing – Anthony Joshua v Oleksandr Usyk Weigh-in – The O2, London, Britain – September 24, 2021 Anthony Joshua during the weigh-in Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua arguably came across his worst fate when he lost his unified heavyweight titles to Oleksandr Usyk in his hometown of London in September 2021. The entire world and a packed Wembley Arena watched Usyk poleaxed, Joshua, for all 12-rounds before the timer went off five seconds earlier, possibly rescuing the Brit from getting knocked out.

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Suffering the second loss of his pro-career, Joshua departed without the heavyweight titles and lost his position to call out WBC champion Tyson Fury for an undisputed heavyweight meet-up. Nevertheless, Joshua can resurrect himself in an immediate rematch, which can happen somewhere in early 2022. It seems the former champion has already begun preparing for that and is adding a few new techniques to his game plan.

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In an exclusive chat with Sky Sports, Anthony Joshua said, “So we are talking about game planning, mindset, and brain training. You know sparring. Our approach to sparring what we are getting out of it. All of these things. Dietary needs, sleep, recovery, mindset training in terms of what I am listening to, not just musically like you know, motivational speeches and stuff like that. Because this is the biggest stage of my career. Fighting for the heavyweight championship of the world.”

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Joshua further said he tried to out-box Oleksandr Usyk rather than trying to knock him out. He believes it to have been the main reason for his defeat. Despite having a reach and height advantage, Joshua couldn’t make use of it. Well, he has vowed to do it in the rematch, and in doing so, we can expect Anthony Joshua to regain his lost position in the ongoing heavyweight title race.

Was Anthony Joshua under-prepared for the Oleksandr Usyk fight?

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Joshua accepted that he was at his 100% when he met Usyk. In the same interview. He compared the performance to his loss against Andy Ruiz Jr. in 2019 and tagged the latest one to be hurtful. Nevertheless, he lost against underdogs on both occasions and is at a very critical stage of his journey. One more loss can eradicate him from the top-tier slot, urging ‘AJ’ to compete in non-title bouts.

Meanwhile, it shall also ruin the final hopes of an All-English heavyweight clash between Fury and Joshua. So, beating Usyk is the only way AJ can regain everything. He will have to push his limits to attain the benchmark.

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While we await the official confirmation of the rematch, Anthony Joshua has the time to prepare himself for every possible in-ring adversary.

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Raj Sarkar

3291 articles

A senior boxing writer at EssentiallySports, Raj Sarkar is a mass media graduate who is currently pursuing his master’s degree in broadcast journalism. In addition to his current role, he has worked with the MMA team at EssentiallySports and has interviewed prominent fighters such as Ritu Phogat and 'The Red King' Rory MacDonald. Combining his bachelor's degree with his adoration for combat sports, he has earned a combined 3000 plus bylines over the last two years.

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