Wladimir Klitschko says he believes Anthony Joshua was capable of unifying the heavyweight division.
Joshua is unbeaten in his professional career so far, and currently holds the IBF and WBA (Super) titles.
Bouts with the other world title holders Deontay Wilder (WBC) and Joseph Parker (WBO) could be in the pipeline, and Klitschko feels Joshua was capable of winning them and holding all the available belts.
Speaking to The Sun, he said: “I have passed the torch to the younger lion.
“I wish, from the bottom of my heart, he continues to carry this torch for a long time and is very successful just like I was.
“Joshua is capable of unifying the division, absolutely.”
Joshua defeated Klitschko in front of 90,000 fans at Wembley in April in what turned out to be the last fight of the Ukrainian’s glittering career.
Despite being stopped in the 11th round, Klitschko insists he would not change the result if he had the choice.
Klitschko said: “I’d say the more Joshua shines, the better I shine. If I lost, I want to make sure I lost to the better man.
“It was an incredible fight. We both had fun, the fans had fun. It was win-win for all of us. “It doesn’t feel like a loss. I won a lot of respect that I never had, even when I won my world titles.
“My ego wanted to win. But to experience what I did, I wouldn’t change the end result. It opened doors and made my sporting life more colourful.”