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28th Apr 2017

Tony Bellew reveals what Anthony Joshua said to Wladimir Klitschko off camera

Bellew says the friendliness is over

Robert Redmond

Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko have been very respectful of each other in the buildup to their heavyweight bout.

The two step into the ring on Saturday night at Wembley stadium, in what is the most anticipated heavyweight bout in the past decade.

Joshua, the IBF champion, is the favourite to win the bout. The 27-year-old has won all of his 18 professional fights by knockout and weighed in 10lbs heavier than his opponent.

Klitschko lost his last fight, in November 2015, by unanimous decision to Tyson Fury, and many feel the Ukrainian, who has dominated the heavyweight division during his career, is past his best.

We should find for certain on Saturday night.

In the buildup to the fight, neither man has engaged in trash talk in an attempt to gain an edge over their opponent.

Whereas Fury showed up a press conference with Klitschko dressed as Batman, Joshua has been respectful of the 41-year-old.

However, according to Tony Bellew, Joshua briefly let his guard down when the microphone was turned off during the pre-fight press conference on Thursday.

“I’m told yesterday that he (Joshua) turned the mike off when they got head-to-head and told Klitschko: ‘I’m going to hurt you’,” Bellew told Sky Sports.

“That is what is going to be needed. It’s that kind of mentality that is needed, and that’s what he will show.

“Anthony doesn’t talk openly, Anthony lets his fists do the talking.”

Bellew didn’t make a prediction for the bout, but he reckons Joshua is very calm ahead of the event at Wembley, while Klitschko is stressed.

“I believe it’s because he’s nervous, he’s feeling pressure,” Bellew said.

“Anthony is probably playing scissors, paper, rock with his friends. He doesn’t absorb what people say to him. He turns up cool, calm and collected.”