Anthony Joshua won’t fight in December as he fights to regain his mental health following back-to-back defeats to Oleksandr Usyk.
In September 2021, the Ukraine genius dethroned the 33-year-old London 2012 Olympic golden kid, stripping him of his WBA, IBF, and WBO world belts.
Despite a significantly improved performance, he lost his August rematch, and in the aftermath, he broke down, throwing a few of his old titles to the ground and sobbing in the post-fight press conference.
After losing his championships and any possibility of achieving his long-term aim of being the unquestioned decider, the father of one let go of a decade of bearing such enormous expectations on his massive shoulders.
Additionally, the Watford legend has admitted that, despite Eddie Hearn’s assurances that he will fight in December, his head has not yet fully recovered. This is despite the fact that he is still physically fit for combat.
Tyson Fury, the unbeaten WBC Gypsy King, and AJ started talking about a possible fight on December 3.
However, he ended the negotiations when he realised that competing on the Fury programme, which was scheduled for the Cardiff stadium, would conflict with his business and sponsorship relationships.
And he has now admitted to the streaming service DAZN that his family has advised him to take a long vacation so that his enormous heart and mind can heal from the painful losses.
“You saw after my last fight, I swear it tore me apart,” Joshua bravely admitted. “I had so much riding on it, for me, the British fans, the undisputed fight.
“It just really tore me apart so, from a mental capacity, my close ones are telling me to rest, mentally.
“Physically I am down to ride, I am a warrior, I like this game and I like competing.
“But, from a mental aspect, I think people have really seen it means a lot.”
After his own breakdown and a backdated doping ban in 2017 coincided, bitter rival Fury turned his mental health advocacy into a second profession.
Joshua, however, kept all of his troubles hidden until the desert heat of Saudi Arabia caused his facade to crumble.
He now has to go through another rebuilding phase and will probably make a comeback to the ring in the spring of 2023 to assist him go back to winning ways.
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