Anthony Joshua opens up after second loss to Oleksandr Usyk - ‘it tore me apart mentally’

Anthony Joshua has opened up after suffering a second loss against Oleksandr Usyk, admitting that it “tore me apart” mentally.

The Brit was easily beaten on points by Usyk for a second time and this is the third loss of his professional career.

The former world champion has now won just two of his last five bouts and he is understandably taking a break until the start of 2023.

A fight with Tyson Fury was discussed for December but it fell through after the teams could not come to an agreement.

A rematch against Dillian Whyte is being eyed for the start of 2023, but Joshua has lifted the lid on how the Usyk loss impacted him.

"You saw after my last fight, I swear it tore me apart. I had so much riding on it, for me, the British fans, the undisputed fight," Joshua told DAZN.

"It just really tore me apart so, from a mental capacity, my close ones are telling me to rest, mentally.

"Physically I am down to ride, I am a warrior, I like this game and I like competing. But, from a mental aspect, I think people have really seen it means a lot."

Joshua added: "Even if I am not fighting, my name is getting called out every day so it's a mental pressure of being AJ and holding up a reputation, they go hand-in-hand.

"Trying to do this thing, and do it properly, is tough. Boxers are rough and tough, but this boxing is a lot of mental pressure."

It is refreshing to hear a boxer of Joshua's magnitude speak openly about his struggles with mental health.

It should give strength to those going through similar troubles that it can even get to someone like Joshua who has previously enjoyed immense success in their field.

These few months away from the sport should hopefully do Joshua a world of good so he can be refreshed for what is an exciting fight next against Whyte.

Whether you rate Joshua or not, it must be admitted that he is box office and you are in for a show when he steps into the ring.

Rekindling the Joshua-Whyte rivalry is a great idea from DAZN and it will no doubt drive a lot of revenue in the first quarter of 2023.

An all-British fight that both must win. Especially after how good the first fight was, sign me up.

READ MORE: Carl Froch claims Anthony Joshua is 'mentally scarred'; advises ex-world champion to retire

Latest news