THE Klitschko brothers work together. They are an intimidating duo. When one is fighting, the other goes to supervise the opponent’s hands being wrapped, looming over the opponent. Before Wladimir fought Anthony Joshua at Wembley on Saturday, Vitali Klitschko locked his gaze on the Joshua. The Briton registered it and the two had an issue after Joshua had stopped Wladimir in the 11th round, when Vitali confronted him.
We got the view from the Klitschko corner. Speaking to Boxing News in Las Vegas, Stitch Duran, the Klitschko cutman, said, “Johnathon [Banks, Wladimir’s trainer] was telling me something had happened. Johnathon’s response was when someone speaks real fast to him [Vitali], and maybe with a British accent, he responds according to what he hears. So I think Anthony Joshua, went over to congratulate Wladimir and said ‘effing good fight’ and Vitali picked up on just ‘effing,’ that’s what JB was telling me. He said he had to come in between them, he and Joshua have a good relationship and [Banks] stepped in…”
Given the level of noise at Wembley stadium, it would have been easy for Vitali to mishear and misunderstand. “And it’s very likely. [It was very loud] I couldn’t even hear Michael Buffer, it was so loud,” Stich countinued. “He’s still the big brother and he looks at him that way and he takes care of him.”
It prompts the curious thought of how Vitali would fare against Joshua, if he made an unlikely comeback from boxing retirement.
Duran has worked with him for a long time and knows Vitali well. “That would be interesting. I would have to go with Vitali, only because he’s such a brute. If Vitali still had skills. If he came back with the skills he had before I’d have to go with Vitali because he’s a brute. He’s a pitbull… He was a beast. Every time I saw him fight I was like oh my God,” Stitch mused. “He’s been out for such a long time but if he trained and ended up with the same skills that he left with, I would say yes.”
But he added, “You can beat anything but you can’t beat time..”