Focused Anthony Joshua predicts blood and bruises ahead of Otto Wallin encounter

A focused Anthony Joshua is in fight mode ahead of Saturday’s bout with Otto Wallin.

The speculation is that, if Joshua comes through against Wallin in Saudi Arabia, he could be matched with Deontay Wilder in March.

But Joshua, who made only a comparatively fleeting appearance at today’s public workout, is at the point in fight week when he just wants to box. The talking is almost over. He has to do media because of contractual obligations but he said the real obligation was to fight and win on Saturday.

“It switched when I came out here,” he said of his mindset. “I told people, don’t bother me, and out here it gets really busy and I said ‘don’t let too many people around me because I don’t want to lose sight of what I’m here for’. I’m still in training camp until Friday…. This ain’t fun for me. This is work. What’s going to be fun is Saturday night, getting my hand raised… I really want to win. I really, really want to win.”

Joshua and Wallin are familiar with one another, having boxed in the amateurs and sparred in the professionals.

“He’s ready and it’s good,” Joshua said. “So am I. I’m ready. I want to hurt him, that’s fact. There’s no games here.”

Of his opponent, Joshua admitted that Wallin could pose “a lot of problems”, adding “but that’s high-level competition. He’s got a good mindset and he’s game and that’s good enough to bring out the best in me… I need to win. I have to win. If it’s meant to be it will be. [There will be] blood, bruises. It will be tough... It will be good.”

Wallin said he was also ready, having only fought and beat Murat Gassiev a couple of months ago.

“I’m good,” Wallin said. “I’m just trying to be myself. It’s nice I’m here and I get to showcase my skills on Saturday. I’m certainly ready for it [Joshua to come out fast and aggressively] but I’m not expecting it. He can try but he will start getting hit by shots and he will revert to what he does. 

“I feel great,” Wallin continued. “I feel confident in myself and my team.” 

Wallin feels he can hurt the former champion, and has done his homework. He thinks it’s “perfect” people are talking to Joshua about future fights with the likes of Jarrell Miller and Wilder.

“I’m just focusing on Joshua,” said Wallin “I’m not looking too far ahead.”