It’s not every day you get a free boxing lesson from the world heavyweight champion – in a car park.
British superstar Anthony Joshua was captured on video having a light spar with a group of fans outside the Finchley Amateur Boxing Club in London on Monday (Tuesday NZT) after finishing a training session.
The WBA, IBF, IBO and WBO champion is busy preparing to face mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev on an as-yet to be determined date after their bout was delayed by the global coronavirus pandemic.
Despite reports he has been struggling with a knee injury, a shirtless Joshua looked in good shape as he took the group through their paces in a light-hearted clip shared on his Instagram account.
READ MORE: Joshua’s next fight could be on a boat, says promoter
First Joshua enjoyed some shadow boxing with a fan, showing improved hand speed as he knocked a baseball cap off his sparring partner’s head.
He then summoned a nervous youngster from a group of onlookers for a tutorial in combination punching, holding his hands up as if they were pads.
“I’m not good enough yet”, the boy tells Joshua, but the two-time champion won’t take no for an answer as he teaches him how to throw a jab, a left hook, and a right hand.
Joshua’s title defense against Bulgaria’s Pulev now looks likely to take place in November with a reduced crowd at London’s O2 Arena, according to promoter Eddie Hearn. It was originally supposed to be staged on June 20 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
The Matchroom supremo – who also promotes Kiwi heavyweight Joseph Parker – suggested earlier this month that he was considering holding the event on a boat but that idea appears to have fallen by the wayside.
Joshua hasn’t fought since regaining his titles in a rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia last December.
Pulev, the IBF’s mandatory challenger, was initially scheduled to face Joshua back in 2017 but withdrew from the fight with a training camp injury.
Due to the pandemic, Joshua is likely to only fight once this year, but he has agreed on financial terms for a two-fight deal with WBC champion Tyson Fury in 2021.
Should Fury be victorious in his trilogy fight with Deontay Wilder, which is expected to take place in December, and Joshua overcome Pulev, then the two Brits would battle it out to find an undisputed heavyweight champion – the first since compatriot Lennox Lewis in 1999.
The two champions had a chance meeting while both on holiday in Marbella, Spain recently with Fury spotting Joshua walking as he drove past with wife Paris.
Joshua insisted it was not a stunt and was surprised Fury noticed him with a cap and a mask on.
“It’s funny because I was at a pool party, chilling with a couple of my boys, some of my mates live out there,” Joshua told Sky Sports.
“Fury fans were there. There was a healthy, sporting divide – Fury and AJ. They were shouting ‘Tyson Fury’ as I walked off. I gave them a gesture to let them know that I’m still here, I’m one of the lads as well!
“On my way back they tried to do it again so I confronted them.
“I said: ‘I’m here for the banter but let’s not make it a disrespectful thing. We’re all just here for a good time’.
“That calmed that situation down.
“Next minute, I bumped into Fury!
“It’s only right me and him will bump heads soon. We’ll put on a great show for the British public and the world. It’s going to be a massive fight.”
Joshua said he and Fury had wished each other well in their upcoming bouts, joking that his rival could have stopped and offered him some respite from the Spanish sun.
“He couldn’t get out of the car and offer me a drink! He was just driving down the strip and I was walking.
“I don’t know how he saw me because I had my mask and hat on.
“He’s probably following me around! He blew his cover!
“All respect to him and his wife.”