Oleksandr Usyk told Sky Sports that he has been "watching" Anthony Joshua for 10 years as they prepare to reignite their rivalry on Saturday - watch Usyk vs Joshua 2 live and exclusively on Sky Sports Box Office on August 20
Wednesday 17 August 2022 16:34, UK
Oleksandr Usyk is ready for the 'muscles' and 'mindset' of Anthony Joshua ahead of their huge heavyweight rematch, says the Ukrainian's promoter Alexander Krassyuk.
The Ukrainian star defeated Joshua by unanimous decision to claim the WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles last September and they will renew their rivalry in their return fight on Saturday, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Speaking at the media workout, Joshua insisted he has learned from his second pro loss, as he returns to the scene of his rematch win over Andy Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia.
But Usyk's promoter Krassyuk told Sky Sports: "He will do anything possible, whatever he has, his muscle, his skills, his mindset, his spirit, he will put everything in the ring but Usyk is ready.
"It is not a secret to him, he will do what his corner tells him to do, he will just play his game smart, quick, footwork, tactics, that is Usyk and that is why we love him.
"He is coming as a regaining, defending champion and his objective is not just to win this fight but to become a man of history. He wants to be the undisputed champion in two divisions, he wants to be the first-ever man in heavyweight boxing who collecting all four belts including WBO.
"That is what he wants, that is what he is caring for, he is not caring about money, about fame, he is doing it for his country with the war unfortunately taking place there.
"He wants people in Ukraine supporting him and they want him to win because Ukraine needs victories.
"Whatever happens on Saturday night it will glorify his native country."
Usyk claimed an Olympic gold medal at London 2012, the same Games when Joshua was crowned super-heavyweight champion, and the 35-year-old insists he studied his British rival since then.
"I am very pleased that I am going to fight very soon and I am happy about that," said Usyk.
"I have been watching him for 10 years already."
When asked if it was hard to focus on the fight considering the ongoing war in his country, he said: "But I did it."
Joshua gave a glimpse of his power, hammering the pads during his training routine, and gleefully acknowledged that he wanted a destructive revenge win.
"Previous experiences are helpful but it is about what you do on the night," Joshua told Sky Sports.
"I don't know how much it will help me but I am focused and I am just ready to get the job done.
"I feel like one of my main strengths is I am a quick learner, I am a sponge but ultimately, aside from all the learning and stuff like that, it is a fight. That's it.
"Whoever throws the most punches and lands the most punches wins and that is all that matters isn't it?
"I will do my best, I am just doing my best and that is all I can do.
"We are going knockout."
Promoter Eddie Hearn admitted that he is urging Joshua to inflict a punishing assault on Usyk from the opening bell.
"Listen, I am biased and I have been deluded at times but I am a massive AJ fan and I just see a guy putting a lot of pressure on himself and a guy who wants it so bad," Hearn said.
"I see a guy who is punching sharply and it is going to be nervous and who is going to pounce in there on the night.
"I just feel that he is going to do everything right and he is going to let those hands go and if he lets those hands go, I really believe he wins this fight.
"I have said this to him and I have said before, by the time that bell rings at the end of the sixth round I want this fight over or I want Oleksandr Usyk physically in a place that he wishes he will never return to.
"If you let this man get into his rhythm, you have no chance of winning this fight and that is what happened in the first fight.
"The sixth round passed and Usyk gets better and better, he figures you out and before you know it, you see him back in the changing room.
"Get in there, get among it, make it count, make him pay.
"We come to this fight as challengers, AJ has nothing.
"AJ is a bright guy, he is an intelligent guy, he needs to understand how he wins the fight and he does now."
Anthony Joshua's huge heavyweight rematch against Oleksandr Usyk is on Saturday August 20, live on Sky Sports Box Office. Book Usyk vs Joshua 2 now!