Anthony Joshua (Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua) British Professional Boxer, was born 15 October 1989 in the United Kingdom but spent part of his childhood growing up in his ancestral homeland of Nigeria before returning to the UK, aged 12 to attend Secondary School in Watford.
He was a phenomenal athlete growing up and it could be argued that the promise he showed both as a sprinter and as a footballer would have allowed him as successful a career in either of these fields as he is having as a boxer. He came to boxing late, aged 18 in 2007 where he joined Finchley ABC in Barnet, North London and in a short couple of years found himself the proud holder of the Haringey Boxing Cup two years running, in 2009 and 2010.
“When it’s all said and done. It’s not the man who shouts the loudest, but the man with the most hunger, that will emerge from battle victorious.”
A British Gold
Anthony entered his 20s winning all of his 18 fights at Amateur level, including winning the Senior ABA Championships in 2010. He was to then turn down the offer of £50,000 to turn professional.
In 2011, Anthony started to stamp his mark globally on the Boxing scene by securing a place at the 2012 London Olympic Games. Representing his nation in a home Olympics, AJ stood out as one of the shining lights as he won the Gold Medal in the Super Heavyweight division.
He was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2013 New Year’s Honours list for his services to boxing.
“As long as there is no enemy within, the enemy outside can do you no harm.”
Becoming a Champion
Anthony eventually turned professional in July 2013, signing with Matchroom Boxing. For the next three years, he remained undefeated in all 19 of his fights. This included his first successful defence of a title; the Heavyweight belt that he won in April 2016 against USA’s Charles Martin and retained in a fight with Dominic Breazeale later that year in June, knocking him down twice in the 7th round. AJ wound up the year by retaining it for a third time in December against Eric Molina.
WBA Super Heavyweight Title
Anthony Joshua produced the performance of his career to add the WBA Super Heavyweight title to his IBF belt as he beat Wladimir Klitschko by TKO in the 11th round at Wembley Stadium.
90,000 fans enjoyed an unbelievable display of everything boxing has to offer and in the end Joshua threw his arms in the air as deafening roars echoed around Wembley in what was his toughest test to date.
In another life, I think I would have been a businessman. Purely because grasping the mechanics of business has always been an interest of mine and the running of a successful business a passion. With the doors that have been opened to me through boxing and the people, I have been fortunate enough to meet along the way I am now able to achieve both. However, I recognise that there is always room to learn more and reach higher levels, which is what I strive to do out of the ring. I currently have 4 companies; AJBXNG Promotions, AJBXNG Marketing, AJBXNG Merchandise and AJBXNG Management all falling underneath the AJBXNG Group. They have all grown organically and have been nurtured by the hunger within me that drives everything I do.
I am really involved in my own merchandising. I have a vision where boxing fans can be served as well as football fans for example where you can go to a game and purchase a wide variety of memorabilia. With this is mind I see it as extremely important to maintain control of my own brand. I have been designing my own lines with an emphasis on the quality which is a corner stone of how I want to market myself and I like to think the fans will take care of the quantity!
On top of all the obvious pleasures afforded by travel and exposure to different cultures and all they have to teach us about our world and each other, travelling also has a way of keeping your ego from getting out of control. The life of a boxer in the months leading up to a fight becomes ever more single minded in focus and smaller in experience. Everything becomes for the good of the upcoming win. To follow this with travel, to go from absolute control to very little is a wonderful way of dealing with so many stresses in one single bursting of the bubble. Any chance your ego had of maintaining the illusion you were the only thing of importance – gone!
The core philosophy Team AJ live by, and the most famous. This value is founded in an unwavering belief that no matter what stage and status you are at in life you never forget where you have come from and where you are going. Even when you reach the pinnacle of your profession there is always, always more that can be learnt and achieved. Maintaining goals in your life is key to constant development within your character and personality, and it is when this Hunger leaves you that progression begins to stagnate. So keep moving forward no matter how good or bad things get and always Stay Hungry.
It is important to remember that even when you achieve great things in your life there is always areas in which you can improve yourself as a person and a talent. Never believe that you sit at a higher table than anyone else because when you do, you start to alienate the people around you and lose touch with the people who helped you become who you are. These are the people who will be there when your journey to the top falters and all the other people who were enjoying your rise with you have vanished into the woodwork. Keep your feet on the ground and remain understated, that is where the foundations are built for real respect and admiration, no hype jobs around here.
I am a strong believer in giving back to the community and helping those who are less fortunate than others. When you help others, not only do they feel happy and positive, you do too. It’s a sacred feeling.
It often seems the pursuit of wealth is our primary goal, but in reality, what people are looking for in their lives is meaning. The human connections we make, our relationships, are often where we find the seeds for this meaning. The greatest form of wealth is human connection and human interaction. These relationships are one of the most influential currencies in the world.
In giving back to the community, I am aware that it’s a two way street built on all that is best about humanity. You never know if the next great is waiting on the streets, homeless but doing something extraordinary. If you never help these people, you may never see the value that some could bring to the table making our world a better place.
“ I’ve been lucky that I’ve been around good people, who kept me grounded and taught me. ”
To the Fans
Without fans boxing would be nothing. I am forever grateful to those who come to my fights. It’s mind-blowing seeing my fans follow my journey as I travel the country, it makes me feel so special. Even those who watch me on TV from their homes are having to watch on Pay-Per-View, it’s a lot of money. Boxing fans are the best in the world.
I like to give fans the opportunity to meet and get to know me, as much as I like to learn about them. I am always aware that it was their support that allowed me to develop the sense of self belief that I needed to make the most of my second chance. Without their support, mine could be a really different story.
It’s important to remember, we are all human, we are all equal and we are all here to support each other.
I will never forget about Grace Carpenter in particular; I was touched when I found out her mum was trying to contact me, I just wanted to send her a get well wish straight away.
To the Sport
Boxing has given me a great living and I believe it’s essential that I give something back to the Boxing community. When I turned professional I took great pleasure in kitting out my old gym, Finchley ABC, with all new boxing bags. This is where I started so I also donated some of my memorabilia in the hope that when the children see it, it will inspire them to dream big.
Even failure teaches us something about ourselves and our goals so take the negativity out of any setback by focusing on what you have learned from it.
When faced with setbacks, taking a walk to think things through and refocus your mind can be very helpful. Sometimes it is that simple.
Break your Goals down
When faced with something that seems daunting, impossible even, break it down into smaller steps so you can tackle them individually. Momentum is everything and sometimes all you needs to regain momentum to tackle a project, is to take the first small step.
Enjoy the Process
Have fun and enjoy the process. For example; train while listening to music, I know that keeps my spirits high. Laughter and life force are immeasurable in keeping your spirits up and in keeping the joy in your life as you work toward your goals. Surround yourself with positive people.
- Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua Biography (Anthony Joshua)