Anthony Joshua believes Tyson Fury’s recent career decisions have shown his ‘new’ steely determination to regain a world heavyweight title in 2020.
Joshua started his second spell as a unified title holder after a rematch win over Andy Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia, with Fury hoping to join him as a world champion in a second fight against Deontay Wilder.
American Sugarhill Steward has replaced Ben Davison as the trainer for Wilder-Fury 2, which is expected to be staged in February after the Brit relocated his career to the US, enhancing his physical condition and profile ahead of victories over Tom Schwarz and Otto Wallin.
And Joshua told Sky Sports: “Fury has taken some relatively soft-touch fights to get his confidence back and is going into the new year as a new man with a new team and a new mindset.
“He must feel something within him that is new, and he wants to be the new heavyweight champion.
“He can beat Wilder providing he follows his game-plan for the 12 rounds.”
Joshua has backed Fury to dethrone Wilder, even offering to assist his preparations by becoming a sparring partner.
But WBC champion Wilder showcased his explosive power in the first meeting with Fury, salvaging a draw with two knockdowns, and most recently knocked out Luis Ortiz while trailing on the scorecards.
“Wilder has shown that you can’t blink for a second with him, because it only takes one punch,” said Joshua.
“A good boxer, who is young, fresh and can follow a game-plan, can be victorious for X-amount of rounds against Wilder.
“Boxing is about hitting and not getting hit. Ortiz got hit with a big punch but Fury is evasive, a lot bigger, flicks out his jab. He is quite difficult to hit. Fury fought Wilder the first time after a long lay-off.”
Joshua is awaiting news on his next fight after being ordered to make title defences against Kubrat Pulev and Oleksandr Usyk, his IBF and WBO mandatory challengers.