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Anthony Joshua has revealed that his war of words with Tyson Fury played a part in him losing his heavyweight titles.
The British boxer was defeated in his hotly-anticipated bout with the Ukranian fighter Oleksandr Usyk.
For some time now, fans have been eager to see Joshua go toe to toe with Fury in what would be one of the biggest heavyweight fights of all time.
But as yet it has not come to pass, with the pair taking on a number of other challengers in recent years.
However, that hasn't stopped either boxer from sending rhetorical jabs at one another and ahead of Joshua's fight with Usyk, it seems as if Fury managed to land a heavy blow, which stayed with the Olympic gold medalist.
Speaking to Sky, Joshua admitted that the Gypsy King got in his head and changed his style.
The 32-year-old said: "Usyk came up from cruiserweight, he is a great fighter, a 12-round fighter.
"And I wanted to box with him for 12 rounds.
"There was always this stigma that I could not box, that I was this ‘big stiff body-builder'.
"So I said ‘cool, let me practice my boxing'. I tried practising my boxing with Usyk and it didn’t work."
'Body builder' has been a popular insult used by Fury aimed at Joshua over the last few years making fun of his boxing style.
So much so, that just last year, the 32 year old said to talkSPORT: "I’m absolutely quaking in my boots, for the big bodybuilder.
"I’m s*****g myself because them muscles are terrifying."
However, Joshua said he was confident that he will be able to come back from his defeat and regain his WBA, IBF and WBO titles.
He said: "He won nine rounds and I won three. But in the next fight I will win four more rounds and I will win.
"I will simplify it just like that.
"Then I will get back on the road to being undisputed champion again."
Earlier this month, fans thought they had spotted a secret message in an Instagram post shared by Joshua on New Year's Eve.
The fighter's followers piled into the comments to share their support, wishing him well for the coming year and some pointed out that his hand gesture signalled his intent to get his coveted belts back.
Joshua seems to be pointing three fingers towards the camera, which fans think is a reference to the three titles he lost to Usyk in September.
It was the second time he has lost the belts, the first being to Andy Ruiz Jr. in 2019. And if he his successful in regaining them, it would make him a three-time heavyweight champion.
Commenting on the post, one user said: "That's right, 3x!"
"3 times," put another.
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