Joshua Rises Again, But Fury-Usyk Clash Holds the Key

Joshua predicted the fight between Usyk and Fury: "Both are at the top, but twice I felt what he can do in the ring"

by Sededin Dedovic
Joshua Rises Again, But Fury-Usyk Clash Holds the Key
© Richard Pelham / Getty Images

Anthony Joshua returned to the winning column in emphatic fashion on Saturday night, stopping Otto Wallin in the seventh round of their heavyweight fight in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Joshua, who lost the WBA, IBF and WBO titles to Oleksandr Usyk in September 2022, looked at his best against Wallin.

He used his superior size and strength to control the fight from the start, landing a series of heavy punches that staggered the Swedish challenger. In the end, he won a dominant victory. The win was Joshua's third of the year, and puts him back in the mix for a world heavyweight title shot.

His promoter, Eddie Hearn, said Joshua's next fight would likely be against Filip Hrgovic, a Croatian heavyweight who is undefeated.

Usyk or Fury, Joshua doesn't care

However, before Joshua can fight for the title, he will have to wait for the outcome of the rematch between Usyk and Tyson Fury.

The two fighters are scheduled to meet in July 2024, and the winner of that fight will be the undisputed heavyweight champion. Joshua is confident he can beat Usyk or Fury. He said after his victory over Wallin that he was "the best heavyweight in the world" and that he was determined to regain his titles.

"I will try to be here. Normally I don't go to many fights, but the Saudis really put on a great show, and this is another legendary fight, so I'll try to be there with my team. I think it will be a very, very good fight. To be honest, I'm leaning towards Usyk.

But who knows? They are both on top. I wish them both the best. I hope they will have good camps,'' Joshua said in the ring and continued: "I fought against Usyk, I think he is a phenomenal fighter and has a great team around him.

You are only as good as your team. After being in the ring with him and after studying him, still studying him, I think he's the one to get the win. I've experienced what he can do in the ring twice. He is elite''