One of the world’s top trainers has looked ahead to the upcoming heavyweight showdown between Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou, and while picking ‘AJ’ to win, he admits that it may not be as easy for the Brit as many fans are anticipating.
Virgil Hunter was the 2011 BWAA Trainer of the Year, and has trained the likes of Andre Ward, Amir Khan and Alfredo Angulo, before one of his current fighters, Joshua Buatsi, took on Dan Azeez last weekend in a bout that he went on to win by unanimous decision.
He has now cast his eye over Joshua-Ngannou, after Ngannou famously knocked down Tyson Fury in his only professional boxing contest to date, before losing a razor-thin split-decision in heartbreaking fashion.
Now, Ngannou seeks to go one better against Fury’s countryman and biggest rival, Joshua, who will himself aim to outperform the efforts of ‘The Gypsy King’. Hunter told Boxing Social of his expectations for Joshua-Ngannou.
“The Joshua that showed up to the last fight looked very, very good. He looked very sound, very explosive, very fast, I would have to see Ngannou again to make a prediction.
“I do know that Ngannou is a physical specimen and he is cut from a different cloth, the way he has come up and how he is built, he has been physically strong from a youth!
“I expect Joshua to win, but it is a dangerous fight. As long as he [Ngannou] is on his two feet, as long as he is able to punch, he is always a danger.”
Joshua-Ngannou will take place on March 8th in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, headlining a blockbuster bill that also features a mouth-watering heavyweight clash between Zhilei Zhang and Joseph Parker for the WBO interim heavyweight crown.