It’s almost show time for Anthony Joshua (18-0, 18 KOs) and Wladimir Klitschko (64-4, 53 KOs) as they concentrate on their final preparations for Saturday night, April 29 at Wembley Stadium in London.
Joshua’s IBF title, as well as the vacant WBA and IBO titles, are up for grabs in the most anticipated Heavyweight bout in recent history.
This will be Joshua’s biggest test to date as he faces Klitschko, who has an abundance of ring experience, and who has faced the best of the best in the Heavyweight division. A lot is on the line for both men Saturday night.
Klitschko knows that his legacy is at stake as he nears retirement and the less experienced and much younger Joshua is looking to prove he has what it takes to be the best in the division, with a big step up in competition.
In order to remain undefeated and continue his perfect knockout streak, Anthony Joshua should focus on these three keys to success.
1. Avoid the Clinch
It is no secret that Wladimir Klitschko loves to clinch when his opponents get too close. Klitschko is able to control the pace of the fight when he clinches as well as frustrate his opponents.
Anthony Joshua cannot let Klitschko clinch too much or he will take over the fight. Joshua needs to avoid the clinch as much as possible, but if he finds himself in this position then he needs to push Klitschko around and muscle his way out of it.
When the fight is on the inside, Joshua needs to focus on landing and then quickly backing up.
In the Klitschko vs. Tyson Fury fight, Fury proved that the clinch can be nullified by maintaining enough distance– this will be key for Joshua Saturday night.
To maintain the distance, Joshua needs to use lateral movement while using his jab to control the pace and throwing shots from afar.
2. Footwork & Angles
An issue for Anthony Joshua is his natural lack of foot movement. Joshua tends to walk straight forward, often flatfooted. If Joshua does this Saturday night, Wladimir Klitschko will capitalize on this weakness.
Joshua needs to focus on staying light on his feet and fight from angles rather than fighting in a straight line.
If Joshua works the ring and avoids walking straight into exchanges with Klitschko, he will be much more successful Saturday night.
3. Impose His Youth
Anthony Joshua vs. Wladimir Klitschko is youth vs. experience. If Joshua comes into this fight early on and imposes his youth and strength on Klitschko, he has a good chance to score a knockout victory.
Joshua needs to come into this fight hungry and aggressive in the early rounds– if he does this, he will likely leave Klitschko scurrying to make up rounds on the scorecards.
Making Klitschko uncomfortable will make him more prone to making mistakes and more likely to leave himself open to the power of Joshua. Klitschko isn’t necessarily known for his chin, he has been knocked down 11 times in his career and Joshua has the power to hurt him.
There are a lot of questions surrounding this fight. Will Klitschko’s age be a factor? Will Joshua display his power like he has in previous fights? Will youth or experience prevail?
Joshua vs. Klitschko is a great matchup and this fight could go either way, which makes it such an intriguing bout.
Both men deserve credit for stepping up to the plate– Joshua for fighting somebody with such an impressive resume and Klitschko for facing a Heavyweight champion in his prime. This is what boxing is all about.