Joshua sets new target after clinical win over Povetkin

Heavyweight champion names Deontay Wilder and Dillian Whyte as possible next opponent

Britain’s Anthony Joshua lands the knockout blow against Russia’s Alexander Povetkin  during their  world heavyweight title fight at Wembley Stadium. Photograph: Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images

Britain’s Anthony Joshua lands the knockout blow against Russia’s Alexander Povetkin during their world heavyweight title fight at Wembley Stadium. Photograph: Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images

 

Anthony Joshua has targeted Deontay Wilder and Dillian Whyte in his pursuit of an opponent for his April 13th date at Wembley after clinically defeating Alexander Povetkin at the London venue on Saturday night.

He showed greater maturity and further signs of improvement as he absorbed the Russian’s aggression before adapting and ruthlessly stopping him in the seventh round to retain his WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles.

Joshua had recovered from being hurt by a left hand in the opening round and initially boxed through a heavily bleeding nose as the 39-year-old Povetkin continued to both miss and land with further lefts.

It was from the third that the champion began to dictate the range and pace of the action, and the seventh when he changed the fight with a huge right hand before securing the stoppage after the first knockdown.

Povetkin had previously only lost to Wladimir Klitschko, and over the distance while the Ukrainian was at his peak, and while Joshua showed signs of vulnerability, his latest victory showed why many consider him the best in the world.

Wilder is scheduled to defend his WBC title against Tyson Fury on December 1st, but overlooking his domestic rival in favour of the American and Whyte, the 28-year-old Joshua said: “My number one [choice] would be Wilder. No contract’s signed.

“[There’s also a] mutual respect fighter to fighter, so if Dillian wants it then he’s more than welcome. Let’s finish the year on a high.

“We’ll put a poll out on Twitter; anyone’s welcome [as an opponent]. There’s always complications and [mandatory] fights we have to do, but sport is about what the fans want.

“Alexander Povetkin is a very tough challenger; he proved that. But I’ve come in here to have fun, do what I’ve been working on in the gym and give it my best.

“I realised he was strong to the head, but I know that he was weak to the body, so instead of jabbing to the head, I was switching it up.

“He threw a good right, but let’s not worry about that, that’s out the way, let’s figure out what’s happening April 13.”

Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn previously failed to secure Wilder as an opponent in a unification match-up that would be the most lucrative in the division, but insisted he would make a fresh attempt to do so.

He also works with Whyte and Dereck Chisora, who are expected to have a rematch in December, and while Fury has already claimed on social media that they will never consider him, Hearn said: “Joshua is a player in this game. The one stepping up and taking on great fighters.

“He is a special talent and a great model. There was a lot of pressure; Povetkin is a great fighter.

“Joshua’s a real world champion; we will go away now and try and make a fight with Wilder.

“[This] was about getting that big banana skin of Alexander Povetkin out the way.

“If it’s not Deontay Wilder then it will be Whyte here on April 13.”

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.