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June 17, 2024

Joshua Dominates Wallin in Return to Form

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Dec 24, 2023

Anthony Joshua scored an emphatic TKO victory over Otto Wallin Saturday night, re-establishing himself as a top heavyweight contender after two straight losses. Fighting in Saudi Arabia, Joshua battered Wallin for five rounds before the Swede’s corner threw in the towel.

Fight Summary

The first round saw both fighters tentatively test each other out. Wallin looked to establish his jab while Joshua sized up his opponent. In the second round, Joshua began landing power shots, backing Wallin up with a strong right hand.

Joshua controlled the action in rounds three and four, ripping Wallin with combinations to head and body. Showing new wrinkles under trainer Derrick James, Joshua cut off the ring efficiently rather than pursue.

In round five, Wallin was shaken by a right uppercut and battered the rest of the round. With Wallin taking heavy punishment against the ropes, his corner stopped the fight after the round.

Fight Statistics:

Joshua Wallin
Landed Power Shots   63     18   
Total Landed Punches  75     28

Joshua Returns to Form

After lackluster losses to Oleksandr Usyk, this was a vintage performance from Joshua. He showed intensity early, breaking from his usual patient start. His combinations were tighter than in recent fights and he cut the ring well rather than follow Wallin around.

Returning to fundamentals, Joshua also kept his lead hand high to block Wallin’s southpaw lefts. After recent defensive struggles, he was barely touched by the tricky Wallin.

Joshua credited new trainer Derrick James for focusing him mentally and technically:

“We put the fundamentals back together. I was on the front foot, firing, shoulders loose, shot selection. That’s all from coaching.”

He also thanked the Saudi fans for pushing him. The sold-out crowd was strongly pro-Joshua.

What’s Next?

With three straight wins against solid opposition, Joshua is firmly back in the heavyweight title picture. The obvious fight is a title shot against the Oleksandr Usyk-Tyson Fury winner. Joshua is 1-1 against Usyk while Fury withdrew from a scheduled clash last year.

Joshua called out champion Usyk in his post-fight interview:

“If that big lug Tyson Fury gets past my boy Usyk then let’s get it on next.”

There are other options for interim bouts. Deontay Wilder is coming off an upset loss and still a big name. Daniel Dubois holds the WBA belt and fellow Brit Joe Joyce beat Parker Saturday night in an all-action war. Still, Joshua clearly has his eyes on becoming a three-time champion.

Derrick James was coy on what’s next but expects a title shot in 2023:

“I think we deserve it after that performance but we’ll see.”

Eddie Hearn suggested Joyce-Dubois winner makes sense for Joshua first:

“I love AJ-Usyk but Joyce or Dubois works. Gotta stay active.”

Parker Shocks Wilder

The chief support saw New Zealander Joseph Parker spring a surprise against Deontay Wilder, winning a 12-round split decision. Parker was disciplined against the huge-hitting American, fighting off the back foot behind the jab and catching Wilder on the counter.

Wilder was tentative as he recovered from knockout losses to Fury. While he landed his feared right hand on occasion, he was unable to bully Parker inside. Scorecards read 115-113 Parker, 116-112 Wilder and 114-114 Draw. Most ringside observers saw it clearly for Parker.

This was a career-best win for the former WBO champion Parker. He called for a rematch in his post-fight interview:

“I’d love to run it back with Deontay but this time in New Zealand – we pack stadiums there too!”

At age 37 and now with three bad knockout losses, this could signal the end of Wilder’s days as a top contender. He gave Parker credit in defeat:

“Joseph had a smart gameplan for the right hand. We’ll see if we run it back.”

This upset shakes up the heavyweight division. Parker lost a close decision to Joshua back in 2018 and has shared 24 entertaining rounds against Dillian Whyte. He’s sure to feature in more big heavyweight fights after this breakout win.

That concludes the story recap and analysis. Let me know if you need any clarification or have additional questions!

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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