Exclusive: Sky pundit Spencer Oliver praises Anthony Joshua transformation from troubled youth to future legend

Joe Hewlett 15/09/2017

Lawrence Lustig

Promoter Eddie Hearn has confirmed Anthony Joshua will make the defence of his WBA, IBF and IBO world titles against Kubrat Pulev.

The pair will commence battle on October 28 in front of a sold-out Millennium Stadium.

One person who has seen Britain’s golden boy bulldoze through the ranks is Spencer Oliver. He admits he’s amazed by the transformation Joshua has made, not just as a boxer, but also as a person.

“When he first came to the boxing club, he was in all sorts of trouble, his cousin sent him down there because he thought he was in trouble and wanted to get him off the streets and he took to boxing like a duck back in water,” Oliver exclusively told World Boxing News.

AJ was a product of Finchley Boxing Club and Oliver confirmed he is attached to the Brits progress as his father and family were involved during the early stages of his career.

“He come out of my gym and my Dad trained him so he’s sort of home-grown which has made it even more exciting for me to watch him come through with my family involved,” he said.

Continuing to praise him, Oliver added: “That’s not me talking bias, he’s going to go down with the likes of Muhammed Ali, Mike Tyson as one of the great heavyweights, he isn’t going to be a flash in the pan.

“He’s an unbelievable guy, a grounded guy, and that’s why he’s so likeable and why the public love him so much. He remembers his roots, he knows where he comes from and to turn his life around the way he has.

“He’s transformed the sport as well with Eddie Hearn. He’s such a good advert for the sport and is so charismatic and has brought the non-boxing fans interested, he’s become a superstar.

“You’ve gotta give him credit, he wants to give so much back to the people who are close to him. Honestly, he’s an unbelievable guy,” he added.

Joe Hewlett is lead writer for World Boxing News. Follow Joe on Twitter @Hewlett95