Kubrat Pulev has delivered a stern warning to his upcoming opponent Anthony Joshua – promising to knock him out in a similar fashion to his shock defeat against Andy Ruiz Jr last year.
Joshua was shocked and shaken by the Mexican in June 2018 as he delivered a seventh-round stoppage to claim his four world title belts, before the British star won them back immediately after a dominant points win in Saudi Arabia months later.
He now has his sights on an epic undisputed contest against fellow Brit Tyson Fury next year, but will first have to get past the Bulgarian in their bout scheduled for the end of this year. But Pulev has vowed ‘surprise the whole world’ and bring the Watford-born star crashing back down to earth.
Kubrat Pulev believes he will shock the world by knocking out Anthony Joshua this year
‘He is a very good boxer for sure, a world champion and he has had a lot of good fights,’ he told Betway Insider. ‘But I see a lot of problems in his style and his boxing and I think I can use every small opening and I can beat him. I do think he has a problem with psychology.
‘I think the fight has the same ending as with Andy Ruiz. I know that I will surprise the whole world with this fight. I will show boxing fans across the world that Joshua will go down because we will be bringing war.’
Many of Joshua’s rivals have been spurred on by watching his crushing loss to Ruiz Jr last year, believing he highlighted a list of weaknesses to his game.
He said his stoppage of the British star will be similar to his defeat by Andy Ruiz Jr in May 2018
Joshua won back his titles against the Mexican immediately in the rematch in Saudi Arabia
But he delivered a masterclass in the rematch in December to become a two-time world champion and keep himself in line for some major fights. Should he come through the contest against Pulev, he will likely take on the winner of the Tyson Fury v Deontay Wilder trilogy as he seeks to claim all five belts.
He was slated to fight Pulev in April at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium before the coronavirus pandemic forced the contest to be delayed – with promoters on both sides being forced to reschedule and search for a new venue.
The Bulgarian claimed Joshua was causing problems in their bid to find a new date and believes the new fight could take place on December 5th in London – claiming the 30-year-old was too scared to fight anywhere else.
Joshua is hoping to stay on course for an epic unification fight by overcoming the Bulgarian
‘We have one heavyweight champion [Joshua] and he is too slow all the time to agree a date,’ he added. ‘We understand the world pandemic and everything but I think we can fight this year and I prepare to do this – it does not matter where, which day, I’m ready, we are training and I wait for the date.
‘December 5th is what we’ve heard and I hear London is favourite to host. We think London because maybe he is scared and he wants to fight there.
‘Normally we can fight anywhere in the world not only in London – but for me it’s no problem, I can fight anywhere. I’m ready, I’m hungry, and I know I am going to win.’
Pulev believes the fight could take place on December 5th in London as he steps up training
Pulev, who has a record of 28 wins and just one defeat, admitted his preparations for the bout have been hampered by uncertainty around COVID-19, saying he will be able to increase his focus if a date is pencilled in.
‘I can’t train 100 per cent right now, because everything is not settled. But if the fight is fixed for December I will start concentrating on this fight one million percent.
‘In this world there’s a chance for anything to happen, but now nobody can say for sure when this fight happens. But I think this fight will be this year, it’s absolutely possible.’
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