Heavyweight veteran and former world title challenger Tony Thompson believes young Brit Anthony Joshua has the talent to go all the way but hopes some sterner opponents are on the way for the Olympic champion.
Joshua, 25, has raced to 13-0 since entering the paid ranks on the back of his London 2012 success, having stopped all of his opponents within three rounds. The Watford man is set to fight for his first meaningful title on September 12 as Joshua battles undefeated Scot Gary Cornish for the Commonwealth title in London.
Victory over Cornish will then lead on to a British title fight Dillian Whyte in December as Joshua looks to clean up domestically by the end of this year. ‘AJ’ can then mix it with the best in Europe before a possible world title shot in 2017 and Thompson says the talented prospect needs to be tested on his way to facing in the best in the division.
“Anthony Joshua looks like he could be a great fighter one day, but that day is not now,” Thompson exclusively told World Boxing News.
“I don’t think he has fought anybody that has pushed him into a tough fight, so we won’t be able to tell if he can be the world champion everyone says he will be until he does.”
Thompson has twice challenged Wladimir Klitschko for the top division crown in a career of ups and downs, coming out on the wrong end of a stoppage on both occasions. Klitschko now faces Joshua’s compatriot Tyson Fury on October 24 in Germany and Thompson sees another early nights work for the formidable Ukrainian.
“Klitschko beats Fury by KO, but I don’t think it will be easy for him,” said Thompson.
The 43 year-old himself is on the lookout for a foe following his victory over Odlanier Solis earlier this year as Thompson aims for one more crack at the big time.
Fights against either Joshua or Fury still remain a possibility down the line.