Joe Calzaghe: Former world champion wants to see Anthony Joshua fight Tyson Fury

Anthony Joshua
As an amateur Anthony Joshua won a gold medal at the 2012 Olympics

Joe Calzaghe believes Anthony Joshua needs to fight fellow heavyweights Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder in order to secure his legacy in boxing.

Calzaghe, a former two-weight world champion who retired undefeated, thinks boxing is suffering unless Joshua fights the winner of Fury's proposed February bout with WBC champion Wilder.

"They are the three main heavyweights and they need to get in the ring to see who is the best," Calzaghe explained.

"It should be one name, one champion."

Calzaghe added: "The thing is with boxing it took me nearly 10 years to win every belt.

"I was WBO champion for nearly seven years and I wanted to be undisputed world champion and Ring Magazine world champion and at the end that's what I did.

"As a heavyweight decision, the fans need to see that because they get paid enough money to fight each other to see who is the best.

"Joshua and Fury are both superstars, there is no doubt about that, but I'm a fighter and I wanted to be the best. It's about being the best in the division and building a legacy.

"At the end of the day unless those two fight each other I think it is going to be a disappointment. They will have to fight sooner or later unless one of them retires, gets hurt or has a bad loss.

"It would be fantastic to see an all-British fight between AJ and Tyson Fury. You've got two big heavyweights and anything can happen when those two guys lands a punch on the chin.

"Personally I think Fury is the better boxer and I think he's got everything to outbox Joshua and frustrate him but it's two big guys."

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'The partying got the best of me' - Andy Ruiz Jr on loss to Anthony Joshua

Ruiz 'too much time in Burger King'

Calzaghe was critical of Andy Ruiz in the performance that saw Joshua reclaim his IBF, WBA and WBO world titles in Saudi Arabia.

"I'm disappointed because leading up to the fight they were saying he was in shape and he'd put more muscle on. I was quite shocked when he walked into the ring," he said.

"He looked like he was spending the last six months in Burger King. He's still a top fighter.

"Ruiz shocked the world and did fantastically well in the first fight but you have to remember for somebody who has come in as a late substitute to be paid £20m is a lot to take on board.

"He knew a massive pay day was coming so sometimes it is just human nature to take your eye off the ball a little bit. He didn't fight as well as the first fight.

"He was overweight in the first fight and he is even bigger this time. Joshua fought the right tactics to win the fight and get the win as he wanted but with regards to the champion he was a disappointment to come out and say he didn't train.

"For a former fighter like myself who always trained like a challenger for 11 years and to have that opportunity to be world champion and say you've been eating for the last few months is not a good advertisement and that's why he probably lost."

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'A genius performance' - Anthony Joshua on beating Andy Ruiz Jr

Criticism of Joshua performance unfair

Joshua's likely next bout will be against Oleksandr Usyk after the WBO said he must face the Ukrainian within 180 days.

Calzaghe said criticism of Joshua's performance against Ruiz has been unfair as he joined the likes of Muhammad Ali, Lennox Lewis, Floyd Patterson and Wladimir Klitschko as heavyweights who have reclaimed a world title.

"I think Joshua's gameplan was obvious. He lost a lot of weight and he wasn't going to mix it with Ruiz especially having been knocked out," he said.

"I was more disappointed with Ruiz considering he won the world title he put weight on. He's a big dude anyway so for him to put a couple of stone on and perform lacklustre like he did was a disappointment.

"Congratulations to AJ and he'll move on to the next fight.

"I'm not disappointed with Joshua. He fought the right fight and he's not going to mix it with someone like Ruiz.

"It was a few months after the fight and you are not going to mix it with someone who knocked you down. Ruiz as the champion it was up to him to close the gap like he did in the first fight to make him engage but because he was overweight he didn't have the stamina."

Tyson Fury
Joe Calzaghe believes Tyson Fury (right) could be the dominant heavyweight in 2020

Fury to beat Wilder in rematch

Fury and Wilder are provisionally slated to meet on 22 February after a dramatic first fight between the pair ended in a thrilling draw.

Calzaghe believes Fury has the edge over knockout specialist Wilder.

"I like Fury. I thought Fury won the first fight although he got dropped," he added.

"He won every single round except the one he got dropped in. I know boxing is about 12 rounds but with Deontay Wilder he's probably one of the biggest single punchers in the heavyweight division in history.

"You saw what happened in his last fight against Ortiz. In those fights don't blink.

"I'm hoping Fury beats him. I think Fury is the best in the division.

"I think he's the best boxer and I think what he's been through is remarkable.

"How he's come back from as low as he was I think he deserves to be champion. I thought he won against Wilder and hopefully he can go and perform better this time."

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