Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Boxing

5 factors which could decide outcome of Joshua v Ruiz rematch

The world heavyweight title is up for grabs in Saudi Arabia on Saturday night.

Anthony Joshua could have the edge in his Riyadh rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr (Nick Potts/PA)
Anthony Joshua could have the edge in his Riyadh rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr (Nick Potts/PA)

By Mark Staniforth, PA, Riyadh

Opinion is split over Anthony Joshua’s chances of wresting back the world heavyweight title from Andy Ruiz Jr in their rematch in Saudi Arabia on Saturday night.

Here the reigning Youth Olympic champion Hopey Price – who will have his second professional fight on the undercard – analyses the five crucial factors to the outcome of the fight.

Mental

bpanews_682f5d87-6a70-49f5-bfe3-c1cf4d255be6_embedded248791757
Anthony Joshua will be better prepared for the rematch (Nick Potts/PA)

“Last time Ruiz came in at late notice and Joshua expected to win, so he wasn’t switched on. He thought, ‘this shouldn’t be happening to me’. Whereas this time he knows he’s in against a dangerous man, he knows he’s got to perform under pressure, and he’ll be much more ready for it.”

Weight

bpanews_682f5d87-6a70-49f5-bfe3-c1cf4d255be6_embedded248770232
Anthony Joshua could come in up to half a stone lighter (Nick Potts/PA)

“I don’t think weight will be as much of factor as some are saying. Joshua will come in at whatever feels comfortable. He looks a bit lighter and a bit quicker, which should allow him to move more. At the public workout he was looking much more fluid with his movement.”

Stamina

bpanews_682f5d87-6a70-49f5-bfe3-c1cf4d255be6_embedded248770803
Andy Ruiz Jr is yet to have his stamina fully tested (Nick Potts/PA)

“Ruiz never looks in particularly good shape but there’s been nothing wrong with his stamina so far. But he’s never really been tested down the stretch in a hard fight. If Joshua gets on top for a few rounds, it might be different. I think it will be a bit cagey early on, then it will explode later in the fight.”

Movement

bpanews_682f5d87-6a70-49f5-bfe3-c1cf4d255be6_embedded248791120
Anthony Joshua must avoid his opponent’s bombs (Nick Potts/PA)

“Joshua has to keep Ruiz off him. He has to box clever but he can’t run away. He’s got to hit him and hurt him and be more away. The shot Joshua got caught with last time was a bit reckless. He had Ruiz hurt and he jumped straight back in. This time he just needs to take his time.”

Power

bpanews_682f5d87-6a70-49f5-bfe3-c1cf4d255be6_embedded248770408
Anthony Joshua has what it takes to emerge victorious (Nick Potts/PA)

“Everyone talks about what a big puncher Ruiz is, but I think Joshua is a bigger puncher. If he hits anybody with the right shot he’s going to put them away. Ruiz will come at him, and he may walk onto one. I can see Joshua winning in the first six rounds and bringing the belts back to Britain.”

PA

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph