Sky Sports pundit Matthew Macklin was in Jeddah for the Usyk-Joshua 2 weigh-in and has voiced his opinions on how the two fighters looked.
When speaking to Boxing Social, ‘Mack the Knife’ said:
“I thought Usyk looked really confident. He’s a joker, isn’t he? So he’s always smiling and laughing anyway.
He’s a character, he’s a comedian, really, at times.
I think he’s expecting Joshua to come fast, and he’ll know it’s going to be a hard fight. He looks really confident, but this is a proper fight. It could go either way.”
Macklin noted that between the two, Joshua looked the more nervous, however, he was quick to point out that nerves aren’t necessarily a bad thing at this stage.
“I thought Joshua looked a little bit more nervous than usual – I think that’s a good thing.
I thought last time he was too lackadaisical, maybe not quite as focused as he should have been on the ring walk and before the fight.
Nerves are a good thing [but] you don’t want the nerves to overwhelm you. Some nerves are good because they make you sharp, they make your reactions faster, [and] they fuel you to perform to the best of your ability.”
The TV analyst was also asked if he thought Joshua would retire if he lost again.
“It’s impossible to say because it just depends on the manner of the defeat.
If it was a split decision or a really close fight on points, they’ll probably do it again. If it was an absolute hunting and they’ve both been on the deck and it’s stopped in six, they might do it again.
Obviously if he gets comprehensively outboxed and beaten and stopped that’s a different situation. You don’t know how he’s going to feel, and the manner of the defeat would be a massive factor.
He won’t even be entertaining that thought right now and none of his team will. They’re just seeing one thing and that’s victory for Anthony Joshua.