Anthony Joshua ready to do 'it all again' after loss to Oleksandr Usyk
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Anthony Joshua could lose out on a mega payday after suffering defeat at the hands of Olexsandr Usyk on Saturday night as he relinquished his WBA, WBO and IBF belts. The Briton struggled to match his opponent’s energy and eventually lost on a points decision.
Joshua was found wanting for long periods of the contest after getting off to a shaky start.
He sustained an injury underneath his right eye in the early stages as Usyk put him under pressure with a clever gameplan and deft movement.
The Watford-born fighter came back into the contest midway through but failed to get the upper hand, with Usyk looking comfortable throughout.
And the challenger was eventually deemed the winner as the judges scored the fight 117-112, 116-112, 115-113 in Usyk’s favour.
It was a depressing night at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium for Joshua and his misery will now be compounded by the fact he is likely to miss out on £100million.
JUST IN: Anthony Joshua loses unanimous decision to Oleksandr Usyk
Joshua’s defeat leaves huge question marks around whether the 31-year-old will now face Tyson Fury.
The two fighters had planned to meet each other for two encounters next year after Joshua had faced Usyk and Fury had faced Deontay Wilder in his trilogy fight.
According to the Daily Mail, two fights between Joshua and Fury would have landed the duo £200m to split between themselves.
For those contests to go ahead, Joshua would either have to wrestle his belts back from Usyk in a rematch or go head-to-head with Fury without any belts on the line.
In the aftermath of Saturday’s defeat, Joshua sent out a defiant message which suggested that the second option was his preferred route to a Fury match-up.
“I’ll fight Tyson Fury, Wilder, whatnot, without the belts,” said Joshua.
“The belts are fun, they’re great, it’s legacy. But with or without the belts, I’ll fight whoever.
“‘The Road to Undisputed’ is a nice title to have and a nice title to chase, but would you still watch it without the belts? Exactly.
“That’s the main thing – that you’ve got two competitors in the ring from UK soil that just want to go toe-to-toe.”
Ahead of Joshua’s tussle with Usyk, Fury admitted he would be watching with baited breath in the hope that the Briton was triumphant.
“Joshua’s in a tough fight,” said Fury. “Do I want him to win? Definitely.
“Because me beating up Usyk doesn’t make as much sense or as much money as me beating up Joshua in the big fights everyone wants to see.
“If Usyk does win he will cost us a few quid. Then again, we have lost plenty of money in the past. So it doesn’t matter all that much. There’s still plenty to go round.
“It would still be a fight the world wants to happen.”
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