Anthony Joshua’s axed coach says AJ ‘better than expected’ in Usyk rematch as he reveals he dumped him over the phone
ANTHONY JOSHUA’s former coach is adamant he did “better than expected” in his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk.
Former two-time unified heavyweight champ AJ renewed his rivalry with the slick southpaw in a lucrative Saudi showdown in August – just under a year after being turned over in their Tottenham tussle.
Anthony Joshua renewed his rivalry with Oleksandr Usyk in AugustGETTY
MATCHROOM BOXINGAJ suffered a second successive defeat to the undefeated Ukranian[/caption]
But former head coach Robert Garcia is adamant the Brit gave a good account of himself second time aroundGETTY
The Watford warrior had more success than he did in their first encounter – hurting the undefeated Ukranian in the ninth stanza – but ultimately suffered a split-decision defeat.
Robert Garcia helped devise the game plan for the Rage on the Red Sea and believes AJ gave a much better account of himself second time around.
The American told ESNews: “I went in there against Usyk and we still did better than anyone expected.”
Garcia, who was brought in to replace Joshua’s former long-time trainer Robert McCracken, has found himself out of a job following AJ’s second successive defeat to Usyk.
He was given his marching orders in a frank phone call with the former champion.
He revealed: “Anthony called me and told me what he was doing.
“I understand you know, the way he is seeing things and honestly, I wish him the best.
“Even if it was me again, I understand they are trying to fight sometime in the spring, having to go to camp in England it was very difficult for me because I know that Jose [Ramirez] is fighting during that time.
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“So, I’ve got to train his a*** off to get him ready to fight. Also, Bam [Rodriguez] will be fighting during that time.”
Joshua is currently in America shopping around for a new head coach and was recently spotted training in Los Angeles with Virgil Hunter.
Garcia continued: “It’s not about Virgil Hunter doing a better job, Derrick James doing a better job or me doing a better job than his previous trainer.
“It’s about him getting out of his comfort zone and not being the boss and doing what he’s told to do in a place where he’s not comfortable.”
He added: “It doesn’t matter who it is, when he comes back, I know they’re going to pick him two or three easy fights so that’s going to make any trainer look good.
“But it’s a big difference I went in there against Usyk and we still did better than anyone expected.”
Joshua is expected to return to the ring in late March once he finalised his new coaching team, with a domestic dust-up with Dillian Whyte in his sights.
GettyAnthony Joshua is set to return to the ring in “late March.”[/caption]