Anthony Joshua has been dropping his sparring partners in the gym ahead of his rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr, according to Timothy Moten.
The undefeated American heavyweight has been in camp with Joshua 22-1 (21) for the past three months to help him prepare for his fight against Ruiz Jr 33-1 (22) in Saudi Arabia this Saturday night.
Moten has revealed Joshua is in rare form ahead of his attempt to regain the IBF, WBA and WBO world titles he lost to Ruiz Jr in New York in June.
“There have been guys here, I don’t want to say any names, but I’ve seen guys come into camp, get blown away and get sent home that same week,” he said to Sportsmail.
“He’s dropped a few of his sparring partners and he’s rocked a lot. Joshua is by far the hardest hitter I’ve been in the ring with.”
The 27-year-old has sparred more than 60 rounds with Joshua and says that the former world champion is in a good place mentally ahead of the most important fight of his six year professional career.
“Almost every session I ask him how he’s doing, what he thinking,” Moten says. “He says to me, ‘Ready, ready’. Mentally he is in a good place. I can see that in his eyes. He’s got a focus I’ve not seen.
“I think he may have needed that wake-up call. He needed to get that hunger back and I’m telling you, it’s there again.
“He’s got that warrior’s spirit. His mentality is to destroy. He is like a focused, caged lion and when the time is right, he will unleash.”
Joshua was in control of the first fight, dropped Ruiz Jr in the third round and appeared on his way to victory until the Mexican-American returned the favour with interest, flooring him twice in the same frame.
Ruiz Jr took continued to apply the pressure in the following rounds, dropping Joshua twice in the seventh round before the referee waved off the fight.
Moten is confident we won’t see a similar result the second time around.
“There’s always a point in every Andy Ruiz fight where he reverts to that Mexican background and he is ready to bang, we saw that with Anthony Joshua in the first fight,” Moten continued.
“When Joshua floored him, he was hurt and that Mexican style came out. Joshua has been sparring a Mexican heavyweight, Elvis Garcia, who is exactly the same.
“One time Garcia was hit with a big shot by Joshua in sparring and we all thought: ‘Wooh, is he out’ but then he came firing back at him, so Joshua is learning to keep his composure, move his head, keep his guard up high even if he lands hurtful shots.
“And then on top of that he has other guys here to work with his speed and general sparring. He’s got a bunch of guys here that are just perfect, we all just work perfect when we are in there with him because everybody is pushing him and we are getting the best out of him and you’ll see the results on fight night.”