Former undisputed World heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis has had his say on Anthony Joshua’s recent seventh round stoppage victory over Alexander Povetkin.
Lewis, who ruled the heavyweight division in the mid-to-late nineties and early 2000’s, praised Joshua’s calmness in the wake of the Russian’s fast start.
However, Lewis would go on to claim an opponent who is “well-prepared physically” could topple the British star, unlike Povetkin who he felt “ran out of gas”.
“Against Joshua, Povetkin started off quickly and soon found himself out of steam.” said Lewis in an interview with Boxing Scene.
“Povetkin started the fight too active, by the middle of the fight he just ran out of gas. Although, of course, he made a couple of good attacks, but this was not enough, because Joshua calmly stepped in and did his job.”
The bout against Povetkin was expected by many to be a routine defence of Joshua’s WBA/WBO/IBF World heavyweight titles.
However, the 39-year-old former WBA World champion threatened to cause a monumental upset with a series of hard combinations in the early rounds that seemed to wobble Joshua – leaving him nursing a broken nose in the process.
Despite enjoying early periods of success, Povetkin noticeably began to slow in the fifth round, with Joshua capitalising in the sixth before unloading a huge right hand in the seventh that signalled the beginning of the end for the Athens 2004 Olympic gold medallist.
It is this early success that, according to Lewis, proves ‘AJ’ can be defeated; but only by a fighter in possession of a full gas tank for twelve rounds.
“Anthony can be beaten by someone who is well prepared physically. Not for half the fight, but for twelve rounds!” Lewis continued.
The 53-year-old would conclude by stating he felt Povetkin should call time on his thirteen year professional career, following his first stoppage loss.
“As for Povetkin, I think he needs to finish his career, he would become an excellent ambassador for sports and boxing.” he finished.
The comments from Lewis seem to suggest he feels that the unbeaten Watford-man is still a way from being the finished article…