A couple of days ago, reigning IBF heavyweight champ Anthony Joshua put out a Tweet telling would-be challengers to leave him alone as far as asking for a shot at him unless they are “serious” and not mere hype jobs. Well, fellow Brit and former British champion David Price saw the Tweet and responded to it by stating he wants to fight A.J for his IBF belt. But that’s not all: with his challenge, Price told of a story regarding how he knocked Joshua out in sparring a few years back.
Price says he did not boast about the incident – one that left Joshua “flat on his face, ushered out of the ring by his trainers” – and he acknowledges it took place a long time ago. But Price, who got back to winning ways in May under new trainer Dave Coldwell, says there is “only one way to find out” whether or not Joshua remembers the incident in sparring and whether it affects him in a real fight. Price says he would take the next shot at AJ, “in a heartbeat.”
“It’s probably the worst kept secret in boxing and it’s something that I’ve never really brought up or mentioned,” Price told Sky Sports. “When it happened, Joshua was an amateur on the GB squad and I was a novice pro and I kept it to myself because he was an up and coming potential boxer. I wanted to protect him from it, didn’t want to go around boasting about it. But our positions have changed and he’s the IBF heavyweight champion of the world. I’m definitely interested in having a shot, and I thought the time was right to let the cat out of the bag and let people know. It’s possible Joshua can be hit and hurt and can be beaten.”
Price, who, interestingly also holds an amateur win over world heavyweight king Tyson Fury, can certainly whack with real power, the problem he has faced is what happens when he gets hit back. Still, Price sees himself as an unbeaten fighter – with some justification due to how the two men to have beaten him, Tony Thompson X2 and Erkan Teper, subsequently failed post-fight drugs tests – he is on the road back, and as a voluntary defence for Joshua he would prove an intriguing challenger. It would perhaps be better if Price got himself one more confidence-boosting win first, but he might well be the next man to share a ring with Joshua, in November or December.
Will Joshua take what could be a risky fight, or will he see a Price fight as one with too much risk and no reward? “It isn’t a forgone conclusion,” Price said of the potential fight between he and A.J. One thing can be agreed upon: the fight would end via a KO, one way or the other.