Anthony Joshua scores first knockout win in three years against Hellenius

Anthony Joshua scored a seventh-round knockout against Robert Helenius in a heavyweight boxing bout at the O2 Arena in London on Saturday night.

The former world heavyweight champion’s knockout defeat of the Finnish boxer, who replaced banned Dylian White one week before the bout, was Joshua’s first knockout win since December 2020 when he knocked out Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev in a WBA, IBO, IBF and WBO title defence.

Eddie Hearn, Joshua’s promoter, in a chat with BBC, said the new, slim-looking 33-year-old Joshua is a fighting champion.

“I knew this would happen, everyone’s talking about the new AJ and the old AJ and after two or three rounds the crowd starts to get a little bit impatient.

“He finds the measure of his right hand and he delivers one of the knockouts of the year on Robert Helenius… this is just the AJ you’re going to see now.

“He’s still got to be more aggressive than we saw tonight but there’s a lot on the line,” Hearns said.

The new win is Joshua’s second victory since losing his heavyweight title belts to Oleksandr Usyk, in a two-bout loss in 2021 and 2022.

His first win was against Jermaine Franklin in April.

Joshua’s new fight record is 26 wins and three defeats, with 23 of his wins coming via knockout.

He is expected to fight Deontey Wilder in January 2024.

Wilder knocked out Helenius in the first round of their fight last October.

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