Anthony Joshua knocks out Robert Helenius, wants Deontay Wilder next

LONDON — Anthony Joshua scored a spectacular seventh-round knockout of Robert Helenius on Saturday on the O2 Enviornment in London, organising a possible showdown with fellow former world heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder subsequent.

Joshua (26-3, 23 KOs), 33, produced an excellent end after a sluggish, tentative begin in a efficiency that was extra affected person than explosive. The knockout got here 1 minute, 27 seconds into Spherical 7.

Representatives from Saudi Arabia had been in London this weekend to debate a battle between Joshua and Wilder (43-2-1, 42 KOs) with Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn for January.

“That is the battle we would like,” Hearn mentioned within the ring afterward. “We’ve got a three-fight plan: Robert Helenius, Deontay Wilder and [WBC champion] Tyson Fury. That is the ambition of the crew.

“He is a mature heavyweight now, and towards Helenius he took his time to ship one of many knockouts of the yr. He is prepared now for some marquee fights. He is smarter now. He will take much less dangers.”

Helenius (32-5, 21 KOs) was a late substitute opponent, taking the battle on per week’s discover after it was introduced Dillian Whyte had failed a drug take a look at, but it surely was nonetheless a major win for Joshua.

It was the English boxer’s first stoppage win since he knocked out Kubrat Pulev in 9 rounds in December 2020, following back-to-back factors defeats to Oleksandr Usyk, the WBA, IBF and WBO world champion, and a cautious unanimous factors win over Jermaine Franklin in April.

After a timid begin, Joshua ultimately let his fingers go to knock out Helenius with a thunderous proper hand. It was a end so as to add to the highlights reel however Joshua was gradual to get going.

Joshua appeared tired of matching Wilder’s fast knockout of Helenius, which got here within the closing seconds of the primary spherical of their bout final October.

Helenius, 39, solely agreed to battle Joshua following his third-round stoppage win over Mika Mielonen in his native Finland seven days in the past. He landed the primary respectable punch of the battle Saturday, a physique shot, within the second spherical.

The O2 enviornment was a couple of thousand in need of capability after the change of opponent for Joshua, and people who had been there started to jeer on the lack of motion within the third spherical. Joshua appeared reluctant to throw pictures within the third, when a single proper hand was his solely notable punch.

Joshua, who made seven defenses in two reigns as world champion (2016-19 and 2019-21), threatened to launch an assault when Helenius slipped on to the ropes within the fourth spherical. However Helenius escaped with only a bloody nostril from a brief, onerous jab.

Joshua began the fifth stuffed with confidence and landed a crunching proper as he started to let his punches move extra. Joshua received by way of with a left hook early within the fifth spherical, and later within the spherical one other left hook wobbled Helenius.

However it was single pictures moderately than flowing mixtures from Joshua, and as soon as once more the group started to vent their dissatisfaction within the sixth spherical.

Joshua responded by ending the battle within the subsequent spherical with an enormous proper hand that caught Helenius as he was leaning again. Helenius’ senses had been left scrambled and he fell flat on the canvas.

Joshua instantly jumped out of the ring to rejoice together with his household and associates at ringside, whereas Helenius wanted medical remedy.

Hrgovic retains in line for Usyk

Filip Hrgovic (16-0, 13 KOs) stayed in rivalry for a shot at Usyk with a Twelfth-round stoppage win over Australian Demsey McKean.

Hrgovic, 31, from Zagreb in Croatia, harm McKean early within the final spherical with a proper hook after which adopted up with extra proper fingers to depart his opponent staggering throughout the ring after a depend. Referee Marcus McDonnell deserted a depend with McKean’s legs betraying him.

Hrgovic didn’t shine in an in depth factors win over Zhilei Zhang in his final battle virtually a yr in the past, however he was sharper towards McKean in an eliminator for the IBF world title held by Usyk, the Ukrainian who defends his belts versus Englishman Daniel Dubois in Wroclaw, Poland, on Aug. 26.

Hrgovic landed a greater choice and amount of punches, amongst them a terrific right-left mixture within the second spherical.

McKean (22-1, 14 KOs), 32, a southpaw from Queensland who trains in Essex, England, landed a flurry of punches early within the fifth spherical, however later within the spherical he was rocked onto his heals by a stiff proper hand.

Hrgovic harm McKean within the ninth spherical with an enormous proper hand to the pinnacle, and the Australian’s legs turned to jelly. McKean, who was courageous all through a spirited efficiency, was pressured to carry on to keep away from additional injury and a depend.

However Hrgovic caught up with McKean once more within the final spherical with a brief proper hook to the jaw. Hrgovic adopted with a collection of clubbing proper hooks to the pinnacle, and when referee Marcus McDonnell began the depend, McKean stumbled throughout the ring. McDonnell then appropriately waved the battle off.

Bloodied Chisora outpoints Washington

Additionally on the undercard, 39-year-old Derek Chisora earned a unanimous determination over Gerald Washington in an in depth 10-round bout.

Chisora (34-12, 23 KOs) needed to cope with a nasty lower by his proper eye from early within the battle, however his aggression was sufficient to see him win scores of 98-93, 97-94 and 96-94.

After being stopped in 10 rounds by Fury in December final yr, Saturday’s win places Chisora in line presumably for a battle on the undercard of Joshua-Wilder in Saudi Arabia.

Chisora, who has lived in north London since he moved from Zimbabwe in childhood, has gained as many as he has misplaced lately and regardless of being slower than he was, his relentless aggression nonetheless produces good fights like this one.

Washington (20-6-1, 13 KOs), 41, from California, has now misplaced 4 of his final 5 fights however he produced some good moments in London.

Chisora, who walked to the ring together with his two younger daughters, was rapidly on the entrance foot and a proper hand briefly unsteadied Washington within the first spherical.

However Chisora was left bleeding from a lower round the proper eye brought on by a conflict of heads early within the second spherical and, because the blood started to move, he was caught by an uppercut.

Washington, who lasted 5 rounds towards Wilder for the WBC world title in 2017, started to search out extra alternatives to land within the third spherical as Chisora’s work grew to become ragged.

Chisora absorbed a straight left within the fourth spherical as Washington picked his pictures on the counter, however Chisora replied with an enormous fifth spherical. Chisora’s aggression received him again within the battle, and within the sixth he caught Washington with an enormous proper hand.

However Washington completed the seventh on high, when he landed a left whereas on the ropes earlier than the battle swung again to Chisora within the later rounds.

Source link

Spread the love

Leave a Reply