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Anthony Joshua’s December opponent criticises his change of coach

Anthony Joshua
Anthony Joshua

Anthony Joshua’s next opponent, Otto Wallin, criticised Joshua’s coach change towards their bout, which will take place on December 23.


Otto Wallin shared his view on this while speaking to SecondsOut, following reports that Anthony Joshua will be trained by Tyson Fury’s former trainer Ben Davison instead of Derrick James. This will be the fourth time Anthony Joshua will be trained by a different trainer before meeting an opponent in the ring, and this behaviour is becoming a subject for many discussions.

‘It seems like it hasn’t worked so far, and honestly, I don’t think it’s going to work with whoever he has,’ argued Wallin. ‘Something is not right if you keep changing the trainer.

‘He had a very good run with McCracken; that might have been the best fit for him. He grew up with him, spent all those years with him, and had all those successes. Change isn’t always for the better.

‘It doesn’t seem like he’s getting better with the new trainers. At some point, you have to trust the trainer you have and make him trust you so you can both build together.’

While Joshua was training with Derrick James, he made the following statement:

‘I’ve watched fights, and, like myself, we are learning while we are fighting. We are in the ring fighting for world titles, and we are in the ring fighting against good opponents, and we are still trying to practice things, which is crazy.

‘Now, it is not the fact I went to Derrick James looking for the old school style, but on that quest to improve and to get what I need and keep on searching for more, I stumbled upon Derrick James, and I really do rate him as a trainer.

‘I don’t want to put pressure on Derrick James and say whatever happens in the future is down to him, good or bad. It is all on me. But aside from what does for me, I think him as a coach I do really rate him highly.

‘I think there’s still so much more that I can give, still so much more in me that I can get out. That search is how I ended up in Dallas in Derrick James’ gym.’

Former undisputed heavyweight champion Tony Bellew was glad to see Joshua under James tutelage.

Bellew said, ‘Seeing him up close and personal in training alongside his new trainer, Derrick James—I was impressed, to be honest.

‘I just think it’s only a matter of time before he’s fighting for the world heavyweight championship again.

‘I really do; he looked absolutely phenomenal with Derrick James and averaged 200 punches per round, which is unheard of at heavyweight.

‘It’s tough mentally the place that he’s in at the minute but the team is a lot smaller. Everything about his training and his set-up is kind of Rocky-esque.

‘So, he’s in great shape mentally and physically, from what I can gather and what I’ve seen up close.

‘I’m just looking forward to Saturday night. I can’t wait.’

The reason Joshua reportedly changed his coach at the moment is for logistical reasons. Reports say he will return to James after facing Otto Wallin.

Anthony Joshua’s next opponent, Otto Wallin, criticised Joshua’s coach’s change towards their bout, which will take place on December 23.

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