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Anthony Joshua: Everyone wrote me off before Andy Ruiz Jr. rematch

Anthony Joshua: Everyone wrote me off before Andy Ruiz Jr. rematchDAZN
The unified heavyweight champion opens up about the Andy Ruiz Jr. rematch and how he felt heading into the return bout.

Anthony Joshua had the boxing world at his feet going into his June fight with Andy Ruiz Jr. 

He was making his American debut and competing inside the venue known as the "Mecca of Boxing," Madison Square Garden in New York City. Joshua was undefeated and a heavy favorite to blow through Ruiz and march toward a possible undisputed heavyweight title clash against then-WBC champion Deontay Wilder. But the unexpected went down and Ruiz sent Joshua to the canvas four times to win via seventh-round TKO to become the IBF, WBA (Super) and WBO heavyweight champion. They met again in December in Saudi Arabia with Joshua winning a lopsided decision to regain his titles

Joshua did a Q&A with IFL.TV on Friday night and revealed that 2019 had been rough because so many people doubted him going into the sequel with Ruiz.

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"It was a difficult time in my career," Joshua admits. "Last year was a real tough year. As a British heavyweight fighter, we never get credit from the world media, which is governed by America to a certain degree, because we're British. Americans are going to take care of Americans. So when I lost… you take challenges, the goal is to win 100 percent.

"I felt and I still stand by it today, everyone wrote me off. So I said, ‘Cool’. (People) telling me, ‘Joshua shouldn’t go in there for the rematch. He’s crazy’. I’m talking about some of my idols. The best thing about Saudi Arabia was proving to myself that no matter what the idols tell me or the experts (say), no one can go against the gut feeling I have."

When the scorecards were read and Joshua was announced as the winner and a two-time unified heavyweight champion, the 30-year-old threw it back in the faces of those who doubted him.

"I remember when I said 'when I win everybody will bow to me.' I said what I was going to do. Talk the talk and walk the walk."