‘Joshua has spiteful intentions for Pulev as he seeks a brutal victory’
• Okolie battles Nikodem Jezewski on undercard
Anthony Joshua has spiteful intentions for Kubrat Pulev and plans to ‘dissect’ his Bulgarian challenger before delivering a brutal knockout, says promoter Eddie Hearn, reports skysports.com.
Britain’s WBA, IBF, and WBO heavyweight champion are preparing to unleash his knockout power on Pulev in Saturday’s fight at The SSE Arena, Wembley.
Joshua stuck to disciplined tactics while defeating Andy Ruiz Jr on points in their rematch in Saudi Arabia last December, but Hearn expects a more ruthless approach this weekend.
“If he hurts Pulev, he will jump on him,” Hearn told Sky Sports. “He could hurt Pulev at any moment because he carries power and speed.
“You will see him dissect Pulev. It’s a battle of the jabs early on. Pulev has a fantastic jab. Pulev likes to dictate the pace by disrupting your rhythm.
“Klitschko did that to AJ. AJ gave Klitschko too much respect and must be careful not to do that with Pulev.
“He has to be rough on the inside, beat him up. Pulev has marked up, over the years. AJ’s jab and sharpness will cut that face up. Then you will see AJ brutally knock him out.
“In Saudi Arabia he followed a game-plan. Things have changed now. He’s got that spite back. You will see him break Pulev down, beat him up then knock him out.”
Joshua has been perfecting his explosive punches in sparring sessions with a variety of fighters, including unbeaten contenders such as Peter Kadiru and Fabio Wardley, and former world title challengers like Bryant Jennings and Gerald Washington.
In his last fight on British soil, Joshua pounded Alexander Povetkin to a halt at Wembley Stadium in September 2018, and he hinted at another explosive performance.
“I don’t like calling them sparring partners because they are more than that,” Joshua told Sky Sports. “They are fighters, fighters from around the world in training camp.
“We are going to war. It is good work.”
Meanwhile, Lawrence Okolie will battle fellow unbeaten cruiserweight Nikodem Jezewski on the Anthony Joshua vs Kubrat Pulev bill.
Okolie had been set to challenge for the vacant WBO cruiserweight title, but opponent Krzystof Glowacki tested positive for COVID-19 and fellow Polish fighter Nikodem Jezewski has stepped in as a replacement for Saturday’s huge show.
The Hackney man, undefeated in 14 fights, risks his world title ambitions against Jezewski, who also holds a perfect record of 19 victories.