ANTHONY JOSHUA has lifted the lid on his battle against anxiety – which leaves him wanting to turn back as he walks to the ring.
The British superstar, 30, is back at the top of the heavyweight division after his incredible win over Andy Ruiz Jr in their December rematch.
And the Watford-born bruiser has opened up about how he overcomes nervousness and anxiety before he steps into the ring.
Speaking to Sky Sports podcast Sidelines, he said: “It’s all fun and games in the gym but then you walk down the aisle to the ring and you think, what if I just turn back and I said I just can’t do this.
“You’ve just come too far to turn back so you just have to deal with the anxiety.
“How do you channel that responsibility and pressure? Dedication.
“When you’re dedicated to yourself, you can be dedicated to anything.
“I am a fighter. Even when I stop fighting I’ll always have that passion.
“I don’t really put on that face for fighting and then another face for outside of the ring.”
FURY SAW PROBLEM
Joshua suffered the first defeat of his professional career when he came up against 25-1 underdog Ruiz last summer.
Speaking to The Times, the Gypsy King said: “Both Ben [trainer] and myself immediately felt that there was something not quite right because Joshua looked cold, and by that I mean there wasn’t a bit of sweat on his body.
“Before any fight, as a boxer you go through such a good warm up that there’s sweat glistening from your body as you leave the dressing room.
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“But that wasn’t the case with Joshua. He looked nervous, he looked like he didn’t want to be there.”
And WBC champion Deontay Wilder insisted Joshua was “panicking in the dressing room” before the shock defeat.
Joshua has set his sights on fighting the Bronze Bomber in 2020 – and reckons he would knock him out before the seventh round.
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