Joshua: If Together, We Can Dominate Boxing Until Rio
By Joe Delaney, courtesy of The Daily Star
ANTHONY JOSHUA would be forgiven for devouring the limelight in his first week as the Olympic super-heavyweight champion.
Instead, the Londoner intends to put his feet up and munch his way through a pile of burgers and chocolate cake.
He will also be keen to avoid the potential pitfalls of his new-found fame.
Joshua completed Great Britain’s best Olympic boxing performance for more than over 100 years when he scored a dramatic countback win over Italy’s Roberto Cammarelle on Sunday.
But he insists it will take much more than a wad of cash to tempt him to leave the amateur ranks.
A professional future is the last thing on his mind as he prepares to come to terms with life in the spotlight.
The 22-year-old said: “If fame comes I’m going to be OK with it, but I don’t want to be hyped up and made out to be something I’m not.
“I look at great amateur champions like Vasyl Lomachenko and how he just goes out there and gets the job done every time, and that’s the kind of attitude I want to have.
“I’m not interested in the money. I want to go out and get a burger and a big chocolate cake.
“Then I want to go back to my flat just to kick back for a few days and enjoy some of my mum’s cooking.”
Joshua knows if he does resist the lure of the professional ranks he could blaze a trail for the rest of Team GB.
For almost all of them will be approached by promoters in the wake of their Olympic performances.
Joshua’s fellow gold medallist, Hull bantamweight Luke Campbell, is most likely to join the paid ranks.
But others, including Welsh welterweight silver medallist Fred Evans, may be tempted by changes in the amateur code which will allow for a degree of professionalism.
Joshua added: “The way the amateur sport is going, with the World Series of Boxing and the new Amateur Professional Boxing, it’s very interesting and it could be the kind of thing that stops boxers automatically turning professional.
“You look at the Cubans, the Ukrainians and the Chinese and all their double Olympic champions, and imagine how great that would be.
“If Great Britain can keep this team together, we would be incredibly strong in Rio.
“We’re in a position where we could dominate amateur boxing over the next four years.”
Now that is definitely a tempting prospect for Joshua who, it appears, can now have his cake and eat it.