SAN DIEGO, April 9, 2016 – For the few doubters left, Anthony Joshua (16-0, 16 KOs) took care of those doubts with a crushing knockout victory over American Charles Martin (23-1-1, 21 KOs), winning Martin’s IBF heavyweight title.
Joshua and Martin didn’t spend much of the first round sizing each other up, and got busy quickly, both connecting with several power punches though nothing definitive. But when the bell sounded for the second round, it was all Joshua. Joshua scored a knockdown on a devastating right hand counterpunch to Martin’s chin, setting him straight back on his backside. Martin beat the count, but only bought himself 30 more seconds when Joshua caught Martin again. Though he beat the count by a narrow fraction, the fight was stopped at 1:32 of the second round.
With this, two British boxers stand atop the heavyweight division, the 26-year-old Joshua and Tyson Fury.
After the fight, Joshua said, “This was one for myself, I told you I was going to come out and punish him, and this is my reward. A few days ago his was this big dangerous southpaw … the fact that he was willing and brave enough to come to the UK into the lion’s den, much respect.”
Promoter Eddie Hearn vowed Joshua would eventually unify the division. “He’s going to go for everybody … This is going to be the biggest star in world boxing if he’s not already …. He’s the real deal, he’s going to beat everybody.”
After the fight, Martin told Sky Sports Joshua wasn’t hard to fight; it was his speed that caught Martin short. “I’m not disappointed or anything, he was just a better man,” said Martin.
Excitement will build to a fever pitch over Joshua’s future opponents. He is a world champion after just 16 fights. Many would like to see Joshua fight another rising young heavyweight star very similar to Joshua, Joseph Parker of New Zealand, who is undefeated in 18 fights with 16 knockouts. Parker is perhaps not quite ready having faced more limited opposition.
British heavyweight David Haye, who recently returned to the ring after more than three years without a fight this January, could end up with a payday by providing Joshua an opponent, though the 35-year-old Haye wouldn’t pose much of a threat.
American Deontay Wilder holds one of the few belts not in British hands and is a likely opponent down the road, but not immediately. Once Wladimir Klitschko and Tyson Fury have their rematch, the winner will be a logical opponent. If it’s Fury, it will be the first time since 1993 two British born boxers fought for a world title; the last time Lennox Lewis defeated Frank Bruno to retain his WBC heavyweight title.
It didn’t take long for Fury to make his opinion of the bout and his potential future opponent known via his Twitter account.
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Ringside Seat in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego.
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