Billed “Clash on the Dunes” in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia yesterday night, Anthony Joshua defeated Mexican-American Andy Ruiz Jr after 12 rounds by unanimous decision from the judges. Joshua joined greats like Muhammad Ali, Lennox Lewis and Floyd Patterson to claim his title back in an immediate rematch.
Speaking on the stage after claiming back his WBO, IBF and WBA heavyweight titles, Joshua said, “The first time was so nice, I had to do it twice,” said Joshua, after reclaiming the IBF, WBA and WBO titles. “You know the saying, stay hungry, stay humble.”
Joshua was tactical and employed different tactics to the one he used when Ruiz shocked the boxing world to defeat him six months again. Instead of trading the heavy blows with Ruiz, Joshua avoided them and landed significant hooks and jabs on his opponent when the opportunity came.
Ruiz admitted he wasn’t in best shape and didn’t prepare very well for the rematch. His father also said the success got into Luiz’s head and Mexican politicians would take him out to party.
“The three months of partying affected me. I should have trained harder. I gained too much weight and I wasn’t able to throw my combinations.
“But I don’t want to give no excuses. I believe I hurt him a few times but he was boxing his life out.”
Luiz demanded a third bout and AJ seems to agree. Ruiz said. “If we do it again, I’ll get in the best shape of my life.”
Joshua’s Promoter, Eddie Hearn was coy when asked about what’s next for the boxer. He said, “The future plan is to celebrate – and celebrate hard,” Hearn said.
“They wrote (Joshua) off. They said he was all hype. Tonight, he was the governor. He’s the governor of the division.”