Olympic Games - Ogogo and Joshua buoyed by World Series of Boxing

Olympic boxing duo Anthony Ogogo and Anthony Joshua admit the World Series of Boxing has made the decision to remain as an amateur a lot more attractive, despite lucrative offers to turn professional.

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Anthony Joshua celebrates gold at the London Olympics (Reuters)

In the past, British boxers have cashed in on Olympic success by signing professional contracts, but the emergence of the WSB has grabbed the attention of Ogogo and Joshua (pictured).

Welterweight Freddie Evans, who fought his way to silver at the Excel Arena, is already involved in the competition that allows competitors to earn up to £150,000 a season.

And Ogogo, who won bronze at London 2012, admitted after returning from a well-earned break, the competition could well be the next target he sets his sights on. 

“If the series had not started it would make my decision a little easier but now that that's come in it’s a whole new concept and I'm definitely keen,” said Ogogo.

“It's a new thing to aim for and financially it’s good, it's a lot more lucrative than just staying amateur normally.

“I wasn’t interested in it right at first because I wanted a break, and I've had a break. I wanted 10 weeks off after the games, I wanted to spend some time with my family, and then I’ve been back in the gym trying to get back into shape.

“Now I'm ready to hit it hard again. I'm ready to go back into the gym, start sparring properly again, get another goal and do everything I can to achieve it. World Series Boxing could be that goal.”

Similarly, Joshua, the Olympic super-heavyweight champion, is unsure as to the next path to take his short but successful career down.

But if representing Great Britain in their first venture in the WSB will ultimately help him to achieve his career goal, the 23-year-old admits it could be a smart move.

“It's a big temptation, I'm weighing up my options to see if it's the right thing for my career and it seems really interesting so I'm looking at that,” said Joshua.

“In the New Year I would like to fight Cuba, Azerbaijan or Italy but I can't confirm anything just yet.”

“But if it's going to help me be a world champion, and maybe defend my gold in Rio, I'll definitely look into it.”

The competition, currently in its second season, pits different countries against one another in professional-style bouts with fighters competing bare-chested and without any head protection.

Typically consisting of five bouts, each with five three-minute rounds, the team with the most number of bouts wins the meeting.

Great Britain, fighting under the name British Lionhearts, are participating in their first series and won their opening two matches against the USA and Italy before suffering a 5-0 defeat to Kazakhstan on Saturday. 

Ogogo said: “I'm quite conscious but I believe in my ability and I think that when I turn pro I'll do well but you've got to make sure the time's right.

“It would be nice to do it now and have a lot of attention so when I do stuff on the TV people want to tune in on a Saturday night and watch me boxing.”

Joshua said: “100 per cent turning professional is the aim, but that can wait. I want to be a professional world champion but if I can do stuff as an amateur to help then I will.”

The final of the WSB will take place on May 10 and 11 next year, as Italy's Italia Thunder look to defend their title.

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