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David Haye split on who wins Andy Ruiz Jr vs Anthony Joshua rematch

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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David Haye in on the fence as to who he believes will win the rematch between unified heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr 33-1 (22) and Anthony Joshua 22-1 (21) in Saudi Arabia this Saturday night.

The pair will lock horns for the second time after Ruiz Jr annexed the IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titles from Joshua with a shock seventh-round knockout in New York in June.

“I’m split regarding this fight,” Haye told Mirror Fighting. “It will either end in a knockout or on points and if it goes to points it means Ruiz wasn’t able to do what he does best and throw clusters of punches and work the body – and that Joshua will have kept him at bay with his jab and won enough of the rounds.

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“But if there is a knockout, I believe it will come from Ruiz. If Joshua stands there throwing combinations with someone who bases his whole style on trading punches and turns it into a slugfest, I believe Ruiz will do something similar to the first fight.

“But if Joshua wins the first six or seven rounds comfortably then Ruiz will be forced to change his game plan and take more risks, in which case Joshua will have a very good chance of stopping Ruiz in rounds 10, 11 or 12.

“If he forces Ruiz to take more risks it will open the opportunity for him to land a massive counter punch when Ruiz is tiring. That’s the only way I can see Joshua knocking out Ruiz.”

Joshua scored the first knockdown in their first fight, decking Ruiz Jr in the third round. But the Mexican-American returned the favour with interest, flooring Joshua twice in the same frame.

The 30-year-old Brit never seemed to recover, and the referee waved off the fight after he was on the canvas twice more in the seventh frame.

“You can change significantly in 12 weeks,” Haye added. “He’s probably been thinking about this rematch and what he could have done better since the first fight.

“The word round the campfire is that Joshua has lost a lot of muscle bulk, that he will throw significantly more punches and that his defence has improved.

“He’s switched on and he’s going to be as prepared as we’ve seen him for any fight. I’m looking forward to seeing the new, improved Anthony Joshua.”

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