Nigeria has always had a way of coming up with boxers on the big stage and right from the days of Dick Tiger up to the present, has produced some very glamorous boxers.
In the not too recent past, Samuel Peters who was also known as the Beast, came up promising and smoking, but that was not to be for long as, he buckled too soon after shining so bright, putting paid to pundits’ predictions of the next thing after Muhammad Ali, as Wladimirowitsch Klitschko sent him to the cleaners.
As if to avenge his brother, another Nigerian named Anthony Joshua, having learnt the ropes, perhaps somewhat wiser came up into the ring and sent Klitschko into retirement, taking back his brother’s lost crown, as rightfully and deservedly the heavyweight boxing champion of the world.
At 41, the legendary old Ukrainian Wladimir Klitschko, with a balance of 64 wins and 4 losses dusted his winning gloves again, but at twilight, the magic was no longer there again as he suffered the same fate as previous contenders for the title against Joshua. In the eleventh round, Joshua punched him for the first knockout. The forty-year-old got up, but then another avalanche of punches fell on him, ending in KO.
Prior to this victory, on 9th April 2016 to be precise ,just a minute and a half into the second round, Anthony Joshua knocked out Charles Martin with a devastating right to win the IBF World Heavyweight Title, a belt that Dominic Breazeale first and Eric Molina later tried to take away from him without success.
To win Wladimir Klitschko, it was reported that Joshua not only trained like a beast, but ate like a young wild boar. Some attributed the victory to some kind of disciplined diet with more insisting it had to be the Nigerian blood that cried for revenge on that fateful day. Whichever the case, Joshua’s victories have come with hard work, dedication, discipline, a well toned physique, wit and strength.
The history of this son of Nigerian origins with a winning streak is hinged on a humble beginning.
Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua was born on 15th October 1989. Yeta Odusanya his mother is a Yoruba Nigerian, while his father is Robert, a Nigerian and Irish blend.
Though born in Watford, UK, Joshua spent a part of his early life in Nigeria and later moved to the UK.
Many don’t know that Joshua played and excelled in football and athletics, even broke record in athletics.
Joshua boxing career started in 2007 at the age of 18. He won the 2009 and 2010 Haringey box cup and senior ABA Championship in 2010.
He participated in the 2012 London Olympics and went home with a silver medal. He also participated in the Beijing Olympics, settling with a bronze medal.
It may surprise many, but neither boxing, football nor athletics was Joshua’s profession in the beginning. Though he also picked interest in chess, but as “omo Naija”, with the hard working Nigerian spirit moving him, he actually started as a bricklayer before venturiing into boxing. That was his hustle enroute to stardom.