Anthony Joshua secured a knockout victory over Alexander ‘Sasha’ Povetkin in the 7th round at Wembley.
Unfortunately, the undercard didn’t live up to what it should have been, however.
David Price was put through hell, forcing to retire on his stool ahead of the fourth round of his bout with Sergey Kuzmin.
Price is someone who everyone in the sport loves; you will not find anyone with a bad word to say about him. Unfortunately, I think whatever he was going to do in boxing he has clearly done.
I, like everyone else, wanted him to come through on Saturday. The thing is you saw the sheer desperation in him after the fight when he confirmed he had this injury for most of his camp. This just shows how much he couldn’t afford to pass up this opportunity. If he continues like that, he is going to do himself some serious damage.
That brings us to the night’s snooze-fest between Matty Askin and Lawrence Okolie. ‘The Sauce’, Okolie, according to many is destined for great things in the sport. I’m not seeing it.
His fight against Isaac Chamberlain was another that didn’t live up to expectations and Saturday showed that he has a long, long way to go before he can even consider competing with the best in the cruiserweight division.
Okolie had three points deducted in the fight; a controversial factor that many believe should have left him disqualified. Askin battled all he could, but the constant ‘wrestling’ tactics employed by Okolie meant he could not get any kind of rhythm going. Nonetheless, the long limbs of the Londoner prevailed through the fight and Okolie claimed the Lonsdale belt to add to the Commonwealth he already had.
Meanwhile, ‘Cool Hand Luke’ Campbell avenged his 2015 defeat to Yvan Mendy with a comfortable points win over the Frenchman. The former Olympian grew in confidence as the fight went on with Mendy struggling to land anything clean. It was the first fight for Luke under new trainer Shane McGuigan and you could tell what a difference it made. WBA Lightweight Champion Vasyl Lomachenko watched on, as Campbell is now mandatory for his WBC counterpart Mikey Garcia.
Onto the main event and Anthony Joshua recovered from an early onslaught from Sasha to finish the Russian off with a devastating knockout.
AJ struck Povetkin down to the canvas with a 7th round assault of the former WBA Champion to stop the Russian for the first time in his career.
Joshua wobbled several times in the early rounds, but generally took Povetkin’s best punches rather well. His defence, however, was worryingly open and too easy for Sasha to break through. Povetkin, to his own credit, took some rather big punches off AJ himself, but after gaining a rather strong foothold to the fight in the last couple of rounds Joshua eventually prevailed with an explosive finale.
WBC Champ Deontay Wilder and Lineal Champion Tyson Fury would have been keen spectators. Fury has come out and spectacularly claimed that Joshua ‘will never’ fight him. Despite such claims, Joshua has taken matters into his own hands on Twitter with a poll of who the fans want. No surprise, Wilder currently leads this.
I will not buy into any claims that Joshua is ducking either fighter; fans just need to be patient because these fights will happen.
The one I feel sorry for in all this is Dillian Whyte. ‘The Body Snatcher’ has more than earned his right for a World Title shot, but it’s simply not the fight anyone wants.