Boxer Anthony Joshua opens up on tattoo of Africa, hopes Ngannou clash inspires more Cameroonians to box

In a recent interview with Matchroom Boxing, British boxing superstar Anthony Joshua opened up about the deeper meaning behind one of his iconic tattoos – a map of Africa inked across his shoulder.

Joshua talked about how his tattoo by emphasized his African heritage and continues to inspire him to achieve greatness in the face of any adversity.

He says: “Just continue to search for greatness, isn’t it? Just keep standing up tall in the face of adversity and in positive times just always, back straight and stand up tall and keep walking forward. Life is life, life can happen, life will happen, you know. So many things happen. I don’t want to start going into everything but when life does happen always, stand tall.”

The tattoo prominently features the outline of the African continent, with Joshua’s native Nigeria highlighted at the center. When asked about the significance of the tattoo, Joshua explained that it represents his African heritage and his aspirations to inspire young boxers all across the continent.

The interviewer talks about his rival Francis Ngannou’s native Cameroon being close to Joshua’s native Nigeria. He says: “Next door is Cameroon, from where Francis Ngannou comes. Is there extra inspiration here for youngsters all across that massive…”

Joshua replies: “Oh yeah 100% there is. 100%… a lot of inspiration that they can take.”

Then joking about his upcoming boxing bout with fellow African Francis Ngannou, Joshua says: “And yeah right now, we’re at war though. There’s a Civil War happening.”

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the legendary ‘Rumble in the Jungle’ heavyweight title match between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman. The historic bout took place in Kinshasa, Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) in 1974, with Ali memorably knocking out Foreman in the 8th round.

Joshua also talked about the match’s legacy, and to Ali’s pioneering status as an African boxing icon.

The British boxing star has never shied away from his Nigerian roots, even incorporating Nigerian musical and cultural elements into his ring walks and match promotions. Joshua hopes his success can similarly motivate the next generation of African boxing talents.