Anthony Joshua takes on reigning champion Charles Martin for the IBF World Heavyweight title on April 9th, and the former Olympic gold medallist is in confident mood going into the fight. At twenty-six years of age, Joshua has won all of his fifteen professional fights, each of which coming by way of knockout. Having most recently seen of fellow Brit Dillian Whyte, Joshua is in condifent mood, despite critics suggesting that the title shot is too early for the Londoner. If Joshua can claim victory however, he would do so in a quicker time frame than legendary figures such as Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis and Mohammed Ali.
Joshua comes up against Martin, the American who defeated Vyacheslav Glazkov for the vacant IBF belt. Unbeaten in his 24 professional fights, Martin is certain to be Joshua’s biggest test to date, in what has so far been a relatively comfortable career. With many who enjoy a boxing bet having backed Joshua to one day be a world champion after his displays in the 2012 Olympic Games, he could be about to become a household name across the globe, with a long list of fighters queuing up to face him next.
With Tyson Fury being stripped of the IBF belt after opting for a rematch against Wladimir Klitshko, instead of facing a mandatory challenger, this allowed his countryman Joshua to claim a title shot perhaps sooner than expected. Fury has recently named Martin himself as one of three opponents that he would like to fight in 2016, with WBC title holder Deontay Wilder as well as Klitshko making up the list. Tyson Fury’s odds on another win are currently 10/11 joint favourite with Coral for his Klitshko rematch.
Joshua himself has cast aside doubts concerning his title credentials, assuring fans that he is more than ready for his American opponent. “The reason I’m here so soon is because of what I had to go through early on in my career, and what I have to take with me on 9 April is that belief in myself that I’m here, I’m capable and I’m ready to rock and roll.”
Joshua has been mixing up his rigorous exercise regime through the use of different techniques, as well as the help of fellow professionals. Sparring partner and unbeaten Swedish Heavyweight, Otto Wallin, is confident that Joshua can defeat Martin having trained with him over the past month. Joshua has also enjoyed training sessions with Watford FC footballer Troy Deeney. Fitness will certainly be no issue for Joshua who has ensured he is in peak physical condition leading up to the bout.