ANTHONY JOSHUA entered the ring for an intense duel with Oleksandr Usyk in Saudi Arabia ahead of their rematch this summer.
The 32-year-old Briton will be looking to regain his IBF, WBA and WBO world heavyweight titles in Jeddah on August 20 after losing to the Ukrainian at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last year.
Joshua and Usyk faced each other at a press conference on Tuesday as they stared at each other for a long time for the cameras.
Joshua then showed off some of his skills with a bit of shadow boxing at King Abdullah Stadium in Al Balad at a press event on Wednesday – which was filmed by his manager Freddie Cunningham.
And after more shadow boxing later that night, he faced Usyk again as they faced each other in a boxing ring for the first time since their fight nine months ago.
After much staring, the pair were told to “break up” with each other.
But once again, they refused to look the other way as the mind games continued two months into their blockbuster heavyweight bout.
Joshua, whose only losses have come to Andy Ruiz Jr. and Usyk, has switched coaches ahead of that crucial rematch, leaving longtime coach Rob McCracken for the accomplished Robert Garcia.
Speaking of the fight earlier this week, AJ said: “With Andy Ruiz, a lot of people can see before the fight that things aren’t going 100 percent.
“But you have to be strong and thick skinned, we take our defeat as one man because when I win I keep it moving I think everyone and when I lose you have to stay humble even in defeat.
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“So I kept it moving and knew I could come back and do what I had to do.
“The fight with Usyk, he busted my ass for a few rounds and I have to take that loss like a man too.
“But I take responsibility for myself, I’m someone who can admit when I’m wrong and hold my head up when I’m right.
“In the September fight I was wrong and he was right and I just have to reverse that role on August 20th.”
Meanwhile, Usyk, who has returned from the war in Ukraine to defend his belts, insists he will let his boxing do the talking.
He said: “As we all know we are not in the best conditions at home at the moment but we are doing what we have to do, we are doing our job together with my team and we are working hard towards our goals.
“I never made very loud and bright speeches, I just worked hard in my training camp and in my gym – I will do that until the fight date.
“And then I’ll get in the ring and make you happy with my boxing.”
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/5622551/anthony-joshua-oleksandr-usyk-face-off-rematch/ Watch Anthony Joshua step into the ring with Oleksandr Usyk in a thrilling duel ahead of their rematch for the world title