In what is arguably AJ’s toughest assignment to date, we at freebet.com preview the British heavyweight’s latest world title defence
Anthony Joshua returns to the ring this weekend when he takes on Oleksandr Usyk at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. In what is arguably AJ’s toughest assignment to date, we at freebet.com preview the British heavyweight’s latest world title defence, providing expert betting tips as well as odds, courtesy of William Hill.
AJ looked back to his best last time out, stopping Bulgarian, Kubrat Pulev in the ninth round of their December fight. In the aftermath of that commanding victory, focus turned to a unification fight with WBC champion, Tyson Fury. When talks over the Fury bout collapsed, a fight with former cruiserweight king, Oleksandr Usyk was confirmed.
Usyk’s career has followed a similar path to Anthony Joshua’s. Both claimed Olympic gold in London in 2012 before turning pro a year later. Usyk then worked his way through the cruiserweight division and eventually became the first man to simultaneously hold all four world titles in that weight division.
Ukrainian, Usyk then vacated his belts and moved up to heavyweight. After a routine heavyweight debut win against Chazz Witherspoon, Derek Chisora provided a much sterner test for Usyk. Whilst Chisora is not in the same class as Anthony Joshua, that bout eased concerns about Usyk’s ability to handle the step up to heavyweight.
The Lion’s Den
Two-time world champion, Joshua will defend his WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight titles in London. Saturday will be AJ’s thirteenth professional fight in the UK capital. Each of the previous twelve London bouts have ended in a knockout win for Joshua. With a weight advantage of almost two stone and a significant height and reach advantage, another Joshua stoppage could be on the cards. You can back AJ to win by KO, TKO or disqualification at 11/8.
Usyk is no stranger to taking on opponents in their back yard. 10 of this 18 professional fights to date have been outside of the Ukraine. Most notably during the World Boxing Series. Usyk’s charge towards the undisputed cruiserweight title saw him take on German, Marco Huck in Berlin. He then travelled to Riga where he defeated Latvian, Meiris Briedis before taking on Russia’s Murat Gassiev in Moscow’s Olympic Stadium.
Road to undisputed
The winner of Saturday’s fight is on a collision course with the winner of Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder’s trilogy fight. By this time next year we may have our first undisputed heavyweight world champion in two decades.
- Anthony Joshua – 4/9
- Oleksandr Usyk – 9/4
- Draw – 20/1
Method of victory
- Joshua to win by KO, TKO Or Disqualification – 11/10
- Joshua to win on points – 11/4
- Usyk to win by KO, TKO or disqualification – 6/1
- Usyk to win on points – 7/2