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Anthony Joshua set to appoint new trainer for Oleksandr Usyk rematch, reveals Ronnie Shields

Anthony Joshua set to appoint new trainer for Oleksandr Usyk rematch, reveals Ronnie ShieldsDAZN
The former champion is looking to make a change ahead of the expected 2022 clash.

Anthony Joshua appears set to change his trainer for his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk, according to American coach Ronnie Shields.

Shields currently trains Jermall Charlo amongst others, and has previously trained other heavyweight champions in the form of Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield.

Joshua has been touring different trainers across America following the loss of his IBF, WBA  and WBO belts to the Ukrainian former cruiserweight, in a match where he appeared to attempt to outbox his rival despite his size and strength advantages before the match.  

With that apparent tactical error, Joshua’s head trainer Rob McCracken has been under pressure and he may now have lost his role in the team.

Joshua has visited Eddy Reynoso’s gym in California, the home of Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez and others. He also attended Virgil Hunter’s setup in the same state, but most recently was seen in Texas with Shields.

Speaking to ThaBoxingVoice, Shields revealed some details of the visit. 

“It was them who reached out to me,” Shields said.

“They reached out to me and they asked me would I be interested in taking a look at AJ, and he would like to come down to Texas and see if things could work out between him and I.

“I said, ‘Yeah, no problem, I would love to take a look at him, love to see if we can mesh together.’

“It would be great to get him to reclaim his world titles that he lost to Usyk and I think I’ve got the capabilities to help him to do that.

“In the last two days, everything seemed to go well. The first day was just all talk, we talked for about three or four hours.

“And when he came back today I told him I wanted to do just some light padwork with him just to show him everything we talked about.”

Shields said the pair of them had gone over Joshua’s recent defeat, stating: “We watched a few rounds of the Usyk fight together and I just pointed out some things that I thought he should’ve done that he didn’t do.

“We had a great talk yesterday, today was even greater. There’s something I showed him that he said, ‘Man, I was never taught to do this.’

“It surprises me that a guy who was heavyweight champion of the world don’t know certain things.

“Like he said, ‘European boxing is different from boxing in the United States.’ He realised that he had to come to the United States to get something different.”

Shields had his own opinions of the Usyk-Joshua outcome, and said: “Obviously it wasn’t the right game plan, I told him he didn’t fight like himself. I think he’s a much better fighter than what he showed in that Usyk fight.

“I watched a few rounds with him, I told him about certain things and he said, ‘Yeah man, that’s what we should’ve done, but we didn’t do it.’

“I don’t know what their game plan was, but obviously it wasn’t the right one and I guess he didn’t feel like it was the right one so this is why he wanted to make a change.”

He even had some ideas for the approach Joshua would use in an attempt to win back the belts: “I’m going to tell you the first thing he told me when he came here.

“He told me, ‘Listen, I know people don’t think I’m a dog, I’m just a pure boxer. Look, I’m gonna be a dog in this next fight.’ And that’s his words.

“He told me, ‘I’m gonna be a dog in this fight, I just need you to show me how to be the best dog that you can teach me to be.”


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