Former world heavyweight boxing champion Anthony Joshua found himself in a tense exchange with renowned interviewer Louis Theroux.
Anthony Joshua is a two-time world heavyweight champion and is an icon in the boxing world. Despite his recent defeats to Oleksandr Usyk, Joshua remains a formidable opponent for any challenger.
Recently, the two met for an episode of BBC’s Louis Theroux Interviews. During the interview, it wasn’t a specific question that caused Joshua to become uncomfortable but Theroux’s interviewing technique.
During one heated conversation, the 53-year-old journalist appeared to irritate Joshua who evidently felt he was being interrupted needlessly.
One pivotal moment discussed was after Joshua’s loss to Usyk, when he tossed his heavyweight belts out of the ring and passionately addressed the crowd.
Joshua said: “That was an ego and pride thing coming out. I brought this heavyweight division back – that was in me. Right or wrong, probably wrong.”
Unsatisfied with this response, Theroux stated: “Probably wrong, probably wrong I think. I don’t think anyone says it was the right thing to do.”
Joshua was visibly frustrated and retorted, “You asked me a question and I’m answering it.”
Anthony Joshua was obviously unwilling to talk about that particular period of his career. But it seems like Theroux did not quite understand Joshua’s demeanor.
He said: “You took the belts and dropped them over the side.”
Joshua further revealed the pressure he faced and explained why he acted that way. He said: “It was like that these don’t even mean anything anyway. I’ve thrown them because that’s what I’ve felt like and grabbed the mic, I addressed the crowd.”
“Could I have done it better? Of course I could have. I felt frustrated, annoyed. I knew I was out of the title race and then the questions started, ‘What is he like? Where is his head at?'”
Theroux went on to say: “All this ‘can he be three-time champion of the world?'”
“People create this narrative and put pressure on me. It’s too much. Gone are the days it was for the fun, when you’re just doing it for the passion, you’re a prospect.”
Upon wrapping the documentary, Theroux offered insight into Joshua’s persona. He described AJ as someone who beneath the surface, exhibits vulnerability and a certain degree of pain.
Theroux stated: “I think there is a lot of vulnerability and a certain amount of pain. It just revolves around dialling that back and scraping away to find the more human qualities.”
“I was conscious of wanting to bring my A game. The boxing world is a bit of a village and like a lot of villages, they are slightly suspicious about outsiders.”