Joshua vs Klitschko: Sparring stories told by Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko
"We've exchanged lots of shots, so he knows what to expect and I do too."
By James Dielhenn
Last Updated: 19/04/17 2:28pm
Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko have revealed what happened during sparring sessions that were previously consigned to secret…
So Klitschko brought in Joshua as a sparring partner to his Austria camp, but when? And who else did he use?
Joshua: It was when he was training for Kubrat Pulev [in late 2014]. Kevin Johnson was in the camp, so was Malik Scott, Dillian Whyte, Dorsett Barnwell. Two guys I've already fought came from that camp.
Just a couple of rounds? Or was the sparring more serious?
We did plenty of rounds, about 20. I was going through a lot of rounds, about 115 rounds in that camp.
Klitschko hadn't lost for 10 years, at that point. His quality must have been obvious?
Joshua: He's a talented fighter with an Olympic-style boxing pedigree, which he's kept throughout the pros.
Did Joshua stand out from the other sparring partners?
Klitschko: Definitely you could feel his athleticism. He's very athletic.
What did you hope to gain from sparring the world heavyweight champion?
Sparring, for me, I would rather they hit me so I can learn to defend. Everyone knows how to throw a punch. I was learning how defend.
Did you hit Joshua with your best shots?
Klitschko: It was not my best jab. During the sparring session, the preparation, how I do it - you have something you need to practice, so you do it. And you are adjusting it to every guy so, in 12 rounds of sparring, I'll have four guys sometimes, or five or even six guys.
How competitive was the sparring?
Joshua: It was just sparring, I wasn't trying to prove anything.
We were pretty competitive. We respect each other, but both competitive. There was no dominance from either of us. It was pretty equal.
Does that sparring session give you an edge on April 29?
Klitschko: We've exchanged lots of shots, so he knows what to expect and I do too.
Watch Anthony Joshua vs Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley Stadium on April 29, live on Sky Sports Box Office. Book the event online here or via your Sky remote.