Anthony Joshua vs Wladimir Klitschko weigh-in: Brit comes in 10 pounds heavier than opponent

Charlie Eccleshare
Anthony Joshua (L) and Wladimir Klitschko faced off on Friday - PA

IBF heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua weighed in more than four kgs heavier than challenger Wladamir Klitschko ahead of their title fight in London.

The undefeated British fighter weighed at just over 113 kgs and the Ukrainian just under 109 kgs at Wembley Arena on Friday.

Joshua, 27, is defending his title and bidding to add the vacant WBA and IBO crowns in front of a crowd of 90,000 at Wembley Stadium on saturday.

Klitschko, 41, signalled a V for victory sign as the pair faced off before nearly 5,000 chanting supporters.

"I just have this feeling - this is my night," said Klitschko, who bookmakers rate as the underdog. "It's a big step for AJ. He hasn't fought this type of quality of fighter yet. It's going to be challenging for him - but challenging for me as well."

Joshua thanked the fans and added he is fully focused for the fight. "When you're competing, it's tunnel vision," he said. "Even though there are so many beautiful people coming to watch, for now it has to be about tunnel vision."

Find your fitness checklist for each decade 2:01PM

Klitschko speaks about his tactics

It doesn’t matter. I’ll go from round to round. I’m definitely reloaded. I wish him good luck.

It does amuse me how courteous and nice Klitschko seems. He's so far from your archetypal boxer. 

1:58PM

Josh speaks

AJ is interviewed in front of an adoring crowd, and says:

I don’t hate Klitschko, I don’t dislike him, I want to beat him.

I’ve been switched on since December 10. In the back of my mind, naturally I’ve been preparing myself for this moment.

Right now [it is a career high test]. This fight could be an easy fight, you never know.

Every time I fought, there are so many beautiful people, I have to stay tunnel vision and I embrace everyone when I do meet and greets.

It’s going to cost you a billion pounds [for my prediction]. A punch lands, another one lands, you miss one, it’s simple. Anybody in this room can become a champion. Somebody is going to win and somebody is going to continue their career, I’m very confident it’ll be me. 

AJ

1:48PM

Face off

The two giants square up to each other, with some token words mumbled, but as ever no actual needle. 

Anthony Joshua v Wladimir Klitschko 

1:46PM

Now AJ

Looking ripped in the extreme, Joshua is out to a rapturous reception. 

Klitschko weighs in at 240.5 lb.

Joshua weighs in at 250.1 lb.

1:43PM

Klitschko up first

The Ukrainian comes out to boos from the Wembley Arena crowd, looking in good nick and relaxed as he strolls out. There are definitely some Klitschko fans in the crowd though, and they make themselves heard. 

Klitschko 

1:40PM

Ready to go

Michael Buffer is in situ, and we are just moments away...

1:38PM

Taylor made

Katie Taylor and Nina Meinke are on the scales ahead of their WBA Inter-Continental Lightweight Championship fight. Meinke comes to the scales 132 lb, while Taylor steps up at 134 lb. 

Next up for the weigh-in are AJ and Wlad...

1:33PM

Scott Quigg is on the scales

Quigg is part of tomorrow's undercard, fighting against Viorel Simon, and he weighs in 125.7 lb.  Simon is 125.6 lb. The winner of that fight should take on Lee Selby for the IBF World featherweight title.

1:20PM

They're in the building

AJ and Klitschko have arrived at Wembley Arena. Weigh-in scheduled for about 10 minutes. 

1:15PM

Preview material

There's loads of great stuff on The Telegraph website ahead of the fight, including Chief Sports Writer Paul Hayward writing that Joshua v Klitschko is a 'balancing act between mutual respect and ferocious violence'

The mutual respect is genuine, but after a while you wonder whether the good manners favour Wladimir Klitschko more than Anthony Joshua.

Adoration is wrapping Joshua in a warm embrace. “My god, he’s beautiful” a Sky television staffer said as all work at the broadcaster’s Isleworth HQ seemed to cease for the final press conference ahead of Saturday’s Wembley showdown.

Inside the quasi airport terminal of ‘Sky Central,’ people lined the railings two floors up and packed the foyer, capturing Joshua’s arrival in thousands of iPhone snaps and videos. Britain’s world heavyweight champion took a bow at the top of the stairs and completed the pre-fight version of a ring walk to the dais where Michael Buffer was introducing him.

Anthony Joshua

1:03PM

How Joshua prepared for this

If you haven't watched it already, I would strongly recommend the BBC documentary Anthony Joshua: The Road To Klitschko (Tuesday 10.45 pm, BBC1), which aired this week. Alan Tyers reviews it here, and it gives an excellent insight into Joshua's preparation for what could be the defining fight of his career.

12:52PM

The waiting is (nearly) over

Afternoon all, Joshua and Klitshcko will be with us at about 1.30pm to fulfil what is one of their final obligations ahead of tomorrow's fight. 

We have a live stream of the weigh-in, and will give you all the reaction as it comes in. 

Prior to that, enjoy our boxing correspondent Gareth A Davies' preview of the big fight. 

12:19PM

Weigh-in time

Good afternoon. Charlie Eccleshare will be along shortly to bring you the latest from Wembley Arena where Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko will complete the scale-scaling obligation ahead of their fight on Saturday.

In the meantime, here's Gareth A Davies's verdict on yesterday's USB stick shenanigans: 

Wladimir Klitschko claimed not to be Nostradamus – no revelation there – but on a day when a boxing press conference was fettered not by expletives or threats but by the gentle ripple of applause more in keeping with Lord's Cricket Ground, a USB stick pulled from the Ukrainian’s pocket was the greatest source of animosity between Saturday night’s heavyweight protagonists. 

Klitschko, claiming he was the boxer and Joshua just a puncher, revealed he had recorded a video message of how he would win at Wembley Stadium and the highest bidder for it – he has placed the footage on the USB stick – would raise money for a charity he supports.

Mind games from the old champion. But significant ? Not according to Anthony Joshua, who laughed the stunt off with such derision in a private conversation with journalists soon afterwards. It provided insight to the British fighter’s mindset ahead of his defence of the world title the 27-year-old won 12 months ago: respect for a great champion in public; desperate to destroy the 41-year-old at the first bell.

It has been unusual to witness a major heavyweight fight, which will be televised in over 140 countries, espouse the kind of respect more in keeping with the rivalry you might see on University Challenge. But the two men are a little different away from the cameras. Joshua more so.

“I know what he’s going to do and how the fight is going to go,” reckoned Klitschko, at Sky’s headquarters in West London. “I recorded my prediction of the fight on a USB stick last week. No one will know the prediction on this USB stick except the person who buys it. I will donate all the money from this to the Klitschko Foundation for the kids to support education.” 

Ripples of applause from hundreds of Sky staff in attendance. “I’m not a Nostradamus but these feelings I have about this fight. It is not a mind game. He’s a puncher and I am a boxer that can punch. I am the man. This is my event and I am the winner already before the fight. This is my event, even if this arena is his home. The majority of the fans will be his but I am taking this fight as my event. This is my night, my fight, it’s my ring and my win.”

Joshua responded with spite, once the cameras had gone. “The memory stick? It took me back to the time I fought Kevin Johnson. He was saying he’d written a book telling the world how to beat me, that he had the antidote. I was thinking, ‘Has he actually written a book?’ When [Klitschko] said it, I thought, ‘Aw, luckily, I’ve heard this before.’ It’s strategy, isn’t it? I’m just focusing on the fight. I’m not downloading no USB, bringing that to press conferences. I didn’t really take it the way he was hoping. It was an attempt at mind games.”

Wladimir Klitschko pulls out a memory stick that holds his fight prediction Credit: GETTY IMAGES

“This isn’t even the defining fight of my career,” laughed Joshua. “When he gets beat, that could be the end of him. I’ve always said if you’re in a room with naked people, you end up being naked yourself. He thinks it’s about him? Liar. It takes two to tango.”

And the global reach of this heavyweight dance has achieved “unprecedented levels”, according to promoter Eddie Hearn. The Ukrainian’s management team has also revealed that the former world No 1 “has never been in a fight with so much interest” in his 68-contest career. The 90,000 sell-out crowd breaks the post-war British record for boxing, while for only the third time rival American television networks HBO and Showtime have bought into the same bout.

What, then, if Klitschko tries his ‘jab and grab’, tying-up tactics, Joshua was asked? “If he does that, he’s walking into my hands, it’s easy then. For me it’s just another day.”

“Trust me,” assured Joshua. “You guys will soon forget about this fight. People move on. It’s a military mindset. I’m a fighter. I didn’t grow up on the entertainment side. Go for the throat. When you win, you get up and fight again. Don’t think about the last fight. You crack on. Military mindset. This isn’t war though, this is fun for me.”

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