By Charles Brun: Two-time IBF featherweight champion Josh Warrington believes that Anthony Joshua must use his size to wear down IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk (19-0, 13 KOs) by roughing him up and leaning on him in their rematch on August 20th.
No stranger to roughing up his opponents with his billy goat tactics, Warrington wants Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) to take it to Usyk and not play nice like last time they fought in September when he foolishly tried to outbox the former undisputed cruiserweight champion.
Warrington believes that the 240+ lb Joshua can cause Usyk to quickly lose his energy if he repeatedly ties him up in a clinch and leans on him with all his weight.
In other words, Warrington wants the 32-year-old Joshua to fight like Tyson Fury by making it ugly, mauling, and getting away from the sweet science by employing a scorched earth approach.
Sadly, it’s come to this for Joshua to try and win and save his sinking career, but at this point, AJ is desperate and will try anything to keep his ship afloat.
It will be hard on the eyes if Joshua chooses to imitate Fury’s boring style of mauling, but it might be his only chance of winning.
If you can’t beat fighters more talented than yourself, you must go primitive, break the rules, and make it ugly as Fury does. It’s too bad this is the ONLY way Joshua can beat Usyk, but it’s apparent that he’s not as skilled & blessed with the natural ability he possesses.
I don’t think it’s wise to start playing his own game. Use your attributes,” said Warrington to talkSPORT Boxing. You’re super strong, you’ve got speed, them devastating one-twos, use that. AJ’s a big guy. sometimes it’s a fight. When you’re in a clinch, wear him out by tying him up, leaning on him,” said Warrington.
Warrington may not realize that Usyk will be ready for Joshua’s mauling tactics and will likely have something that can counteract what he attempts to do with the grabbing & leaning.
One strategy is for Usyk to fall to the canvas when Joshua leans, so the referee must pick him up and separate them.
As long as Usyk doesn’t tire himself from going down, he should be fine and can nullify Joshua’s attempts to weaken him by leaning 24/7.
“That’s how he’s got to make it for Usyk. He’s gotta tire him out,” Warrington continued. “He’s got to rough him up and not be scared to let that right hand go. I think the more he pushes him, the more opportunities he will get.
“I think that’s the way he beats him. He’s gotta take it to him,” said Josh.
Don’t be surprised if Usyk brains Joshua with short clubbing punches when he’s being tied up repeatedly. With his shorter arms, Usyk can generate more power in close than the 6’6″ Joshua, and he can do damage with punches thrown at point-blank range.