Anthony Joshua vs Usyk: Joshua doesn’t trust his old trainer, picks ‘2012 best trainer’ to train him ahead of his fight with Oleksandr Usyk

Anthony Joshua has reportedly brought in Robert Garcia as his new trainer ahead of his rematch against Oleksandr Usyk later this year.

The Brit was comprehensively beaten by the Ukrainian via unanimous decision when the pair met at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in September last year.

Joshua subsequently went on a tour of the United States and visited several gyms in the country, including Garcia’s as well as those of Virgil Hunter, Eddy Reynoso and Ronnie Shields.

But ESPN claim Joshua has now settled on Garcia – who was named the 2012 Trainer of the Year – after having believed to have split with long-time coach Rob McCracken.

Now he is set to travel to England to see if he can help Joshua to bounce back in a showdown against Usyk which is still being scheduled for July 23 in Saudi Arabia.

It is understood the 32-year-old has been working with assistant coach Angel Fernandez in the meantime since his defeat.

Garcia himself was a world champion in his fighting days, winning a super-featherweight title in 1998, only to go on to surrender the belt 12 months later.

But as a trainer the 47-year-old has led no fewer than 14 boxers to world titles and is held in high esteem in the sport for creating game plans and being able to make tactical adjustments.

And that could work in Joshua’s favour, with McCracken and the rest of the heavyweight’s team criticised for their lack of gameplan in allowing Usyk to become a two-weight world champion.

That was also Joshua’s focus when he was addressing his rematch against Usyk during a Q&A with the Oxford Union.

‘If I’m honest with you, this is the first time in my career I’d say we are specifically working to a game plan,’ Joshua said.

‘So it will all make sense after July 23. I’ve based a lot of my success on raw ability, with the right coaches, experienced coaches.

‘But they probably knew I had ability. So, it’s just about neutering that ability. What tends to happen is, we overthink things too much when there isn’t a game plan.

‘Because things don’t always go our way when it’s based on raw ability. So I believe when I start looking at social media now, you’re seeing so many different aspects of training and stuff.

‘So raw ability wasn’t enough, so now I’m going to try out this new gameplan training and see how it goes.’


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here