Anthony Joshua hits back at old coach Robert Garcia over ‘weird’ criticism

·2-min read

Anthony Joshua has hit back at Robert Garcia over his former coach’s ‘weird’ criticism.

Joshua trained under Garcia ahead of his most recent fight, a second straight points loss to Oleksandr Usyk. Prior to that bout in August, the Briton had been coached by Rob McCracken for his entire professional career. On Saturday, Joshua faces Jermaine Franklin at London’s O2 Arena, where Derrick James will be in his corner – as “AJ”’s third different coach in as many fights.

Ahead of that contest, Joshua told reporters that he ‘didn’t like’ recent criticism by Garcia, who suggested that the 33-year-old was in need of ‘a stricter camp, where he follows indications’.

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“When it comes to your head coach, I think it is important to keep things in-house, especially when you are talking about your fighters,” Joshua said on Wednesday (29 March). “There are things I didn’t like about some of my old coaches that I could talk about, but I don’t.

“No one is perfect but, when you come together in arms to go to war, there should be a level of respect. I have worked with Sean Murphy and John Oliver in the amateurs, all the GB coaches, Tony Sims and Rob McCracken in the [professionals], Angel Fernandez, Joby Clayton, Robert Garcia and Derrick James.

“Garcia is the first one to say the things he said, and I didn’t like that, I found it weird. I am not perfect. Trust me, I do have tough days in camp, but he went and pointed those things out – out of all the things we did in training camp.”

Under Garcia, Joshua fell to a decision defeat by Usyk, just as he had under McCracken in 2021.

Now Joshua is aiming to bounce back as he fights Franklin, who is coming off a narrow points loss to Dillian Whyte in November.

Franklin, 29, lost a majority decision to Whyte, but many fans and pundits thought the American had done enough to win.

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