The weigh in for the world heavyweight championship super fight at Wembley Stadium has produced a sensation of its own.
Anthony Joshua hit the scales heavier than Wladimir Klitschko by almost 10lbs.
Klitschko, the Ukrainian who dominated heavyweight boxing for a decade before losing all of his titles to Tyson
Fury, is clearly going for unusual speed against Britain’s muscular IBF title holder and fabled knockout puncher.
Although his torso, biceps and shoulder were rippling with extra muscles, Joshua weighed in only a pound or so heavier than his previous heaviest of 250.2lbs.
The shock was that Klitschko, although now 41, came in half a stone lighter than his usual fighting weight, at 240.6lbs.
Although Klitschko is on record as saying: ‘My anticipation beats his speed,’ he has prepared himself to produce faster hands and fleeter movement.
A crowd of some 2,000 in the Wembley Arena, adjacent to the stadium which will hold the British record crowd of 90,000 this Saturday night, were told by Joshua that he would not necessarily go for the quick-fire KO which has been predicted.
He said: ‘In a fight at this level I go round-by-round and then take advantage of the opening if one presents itself.’
When Klitschko saw Joshua at the preceding open workouts, he said: ‘I’ve never seen Anthony this big. He looks like Arnold Schwarzenegger in his body building prime.’
Although the majority present were cheering for the hometown Joshua, there was vocal support for Klitschko also.
The surprise on the scales may affect the betting odds which have been favouring Joshua narrowly at just under 1/2, with Klitschko at a little less than 2/1.
Speaking after the weigh-in, Joshua refuted claims that his opponent has got under his skin, insisting: I don’t hate Klitschko.’
He added: ‘I don’t dislike Klitschko, but I want to beat Klitschko. It’s a boxing match, I’m competitive and that’s all it is.’
JOSHUA vs KLITSCHKO TALE OF THE TAPE
KO percentage: 100
Height/Reach: 6ft 6ins/82ins
KO percentage: 82
Height/Reach: 6ft 6ins/81ins