Anthony Joshua and Jermaine Franklin had to be separated at the end of their contest.

The pair locked horns in the immediate aftermath at the O2 Arena in London on Saturday night.

Joshua was back in the ring for the first time since losing in a rematch at the hands of Oleksandr Usyk last August.

And that win came on points as tensions flared prior to the decision being read out by master of ceremonies David Diamante.

Joshua, who trained for this fight under the tutelage of Derrick James in Texas for the first time, won via unanimous decision with scorecards of 118-111, 117-111 and 117-111 in his favour.

But despite the pair nearly coming to blows after the fight, the former two-time unified heavyweight king, who has previously held the WBA Super, IBF, WBO and IBO titles, insisted that he has plenty of respect for his American foe.

“Jermaine’s got a good duck-and-dive style,” Joshua said when speaking to DAZN’s Ade Oladipo in the ring after getting back to winning ways.“There was opportunities there. You know they were prepared for the fight. I should have knocked him out but what can I say now? It’s done. On to the next.”

Franklin was known to British fight fans going into the Joshua clash having previously shared the ring with former WBC world title challenger Dillian Whyte.

“When people come to fight me, I think they [muster] up a different kind of energy,” Joshua added. “I feel like he had a lot of pride.

He’s here to prove himself. He ain’t here to roll over. I wish I could have knocked him out, 100 percent.

"But in the next 15 years, no one will remember that fight anyway.”