Anthony Joshua will be looking to avenge the only defeat of his professional career on December 7, and if he can exorcise the demons of his shock knockout defeat at the hands of Andy Ruiz Jr it will be considered one of, if not the biggest victory of his career so far. But where would it rank among Joshua’s previous successes?
Ahead of his huge heavyweight title rematch with Ruiz Jr, we have picked out five of the former champion’s most important victories to date.
READ MORE: Get our free Andy Ruiz Jr v Anthony Joshua 2 betting tips for December 7.
1) Joshua v Kevin Johnson (May 30, 2015)
Anthony Joshua boasted a perfect 12-0 record when he stepped into the ring to face former heavyweight title challenger Kevin Johnson. The veteran American was not expected to pose many problems for the rising star, but he was expected to provide some sort of challenge having never been stopped in his professional career. However, he simply could not take the power that was coming his way. Johnson was saved by the bell at the end of the first round and was then saved from a beating by the referee in the second.
2) Joshua v Dillian Whyte (December 12, 2015)
Trash talk is often used to sell a fight to the general public, but on this occasion these two men had a genuine dislike for each other that threatened to spill over during the fight. Dillian Whyte had beaten Anthony Joshua when the two men met in the amateur ranks and was determined to become the first man to beat him in a professional ring too. Bad blood flowed and at one point a riot almost erupted in the ring as the two men threw punches after the bell. That incident appeared to knock Joshua off his game for a couple of rounds, but when he regained his composure he went to his clinical, fight-ending best, finishing Whyte off with a devastating uppercut in the seventh round.
3) Joshua v Charles Martin (April 9, 2016)
This was over in the blink of an eye, but it simply has to be included because this was the night that Anthony Joshua became heavyweight champion of the world. Joshua only had 15 professional bouts on his record at that time, but the opportunity to fight for the IBF title was too good to pass up and he needed less than two rounds to send Charles Martin back to America empty-handed.
4) Joshua v Wladimir Klitschko (April 29, 2017)
How can we not include the night where Joshua sent a legend into retirement? Wladimir Klitschko had arrived at Wembley Stadium looking to rid himself of the sour taste left in his mouth by his dismal performance in a decision defeat to Tyson Fury, and the Ukrainian boxing icon did just that by playing his part in an epic heavyweight encounter that saw both men hit the canvas before Anthony Joshua finally got the job done with an 11th round stoppage that added the WBA (Super) and IBO titles to his collection.
5) Joshua v Joseph Parker (March 31, 2018)
Three down, two to go. Anthony Joshua’s quest to become undisputed heavyweight champion of the world saw him face fellow undefeated fighter, Joseph Parker, in a fight that would unify the Brit’s WBA (Super) IBF and IBO titles with the New Zealander’s WBO crown. But who’s ‘0’ would go at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff? The answer was Parker’s. The Kiwi did become the first man to take Joshua the distance, but it was merely a moral victory as the judges ruled unanimously in the favour of Joshua.