WHEN he found out his little brother would be fighting Anthony Joshua at Wembley Stadium, Vitali Klitschko took a close look at the unbeaten Londoner – and he’s happy with what he saw.
The bookmakers have Joshua, the reigning IBF champion, favourite to win in front of 90,000 fans tomorrow night as question marks hover about how much Wladimir Klitschko has left.
Vitali is happily retired, but he’s made the journey to London to be by his brother’s side and took time to study ‘AJ’.
“I know Joshua is a great fighter, has great skills and a great record but I want to say, Joshua has never fought an opponent with such high quality as Wladimir and that’s why Joshua was today relaxed and thought ‘easy.’ It’s not, it will not be an easy game,” he said yesterday after the final press conference.
“My prediction; I believe in my brother, I know him very well. I’ve also studied Joshua and my prediction; good for Wladimir. In life, [there are] good and bad sides. It’s very unpredictable.
“This fight against Joshua is a great fight. It’s very difficult to fight against an unpredictable fighter like [Tyson] Fury and Joshua, in my personal opinion, is very good for Wladimir, from [seeing] his style I was happy. I saw not many fights of his but then I investigated a bit and studied him and I was happy. Good opponent for Wladimir to show his skills.”
The party line is that Wladimir had an off night against Fury in 2015 and was simply not at the races. No such mistakes will be made this time around, Team Klitschko insist.
Vitali feels that if his younger brother applies the same focus he has had for his entire training camp, there will only be one winner tomorrow night.
“Everyone has his strong side and weakness. I know my brother very well, maybe better than anyone, and my brother’s weakness can be concentration for a fight,” he said.
“I never saw my brother so focused for a fight, right now he understands what’s gone on and a lot depends on this fight.
“If Wladimir has the same concentration in this fight that he had in training, everything will be good and Wladimir will show the whole world again that he is the strongest fighter in the world.
“Everything depends on Wladimir, he has all the skills to show again.”