Anthony Joshua rejects Wilder's criticism of Ruiz rematch performance

Deontay Wilder was extremely critical of Anthony Joshua after he won his rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr, but the Briton dismissed his comments.

Published : Dec 11, 2019 11:49 IST

Anthony Joshua after winning his rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia.
Anthony Joshua after winning his rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia.

Anthony Joshua after winning his rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia.

Anthony Joshua dismissed Deontay Wilder's criticism of his performance in the rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr, insisting him regaining three of the major heavyweight titles was all that mattered.

Joshua, having been stunned by Ruiz in his sole professional defeat at Madison Square Garden in June, cruised to a unanimous decision victory in their second meeting in Saudi Arabia on Saturday to win back the WBA, IBF and WBO belts.

The Briton controlled the fight superbly with the jab, taking full advantage of his extra reach and refusing to get into the frantic exchanges that were won so decisively by Ruiz in their first match in New York. While the scorecards reflected a dominant Joshua performance, Deontay Wilder - the WBC champion - slammed his "dance and grab and jab and hold" approach.

"Fans come to see knockouts. They come to see something dramatic - a body lying on the canvas, spread like it's having birth. That's what people want to see, and that's my mentality," Wilder told The Athletic.

READ | Joshua beats Andy Ruiz Jr on points to regain heavyweight titles

However, Joshua, speaking to the same publication, said: "I care about my fans … of course. But what more can I do except get the win? That's the most important thing

"[The fans] want to see knockouts all the time. But the good thing is that I'm a boxer-puncher. Sometimes I'm going to box, sometimes I'm going to knock a man out. And onto the next one."

Asked about Wilder's assessment, Joshua replied: "That's Wilder's opinion. A lot of people don't have a good bone in their body to say a positive thing anyway.

"I out-boxed the heavyweight champion of the world for 12 rounds. I don't think I lost a round. Maybe one … I come in there with a great game plan, I'm successful. Isn't that good enough?

"You can't box to keep everyone happy; you have to box for the win. And I feel like when I'm at home celebrating, he's there talking about negativity. Negative energy breeds failure so I'm just going to keep a positive mindset and build on that victory."

A unification bout with Wilder appears no closer to coming to fruition, with the American seemingly set for a February rematch with Tyson Fury following their thrilling draw last December.

IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev looks to be next on the horizon for Joshua, who added: "With or without Wilder we're still going to break records, but if Wilder really wants to put his name down in the history books, I think that he should come see us."


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