Six months after losing his first fight to Andy Ruiz Jr. in New York, British-Nigerian boxer, Anthony Joshua, returned to the ring on Saturday December 7, 2019 to reclaim his glory from Ruiz. After 12 rounds, the judges unanimously declared Joshua the winner of the rematch. While the world is celebrating this champion, I made a list of nine things most people don’t know about him. See below:
Joshua has a four year old son named Temiloluwa Bayley Joseph Prince Joshua with his on-and-off girlfriend, Nicole Osbourne. Osbourne is a yoga instructor and a YouTube pole dancer. Joshua on several occasion described his son as his “everything and number one priority.” Not long ago, he bought a house in London worth £500,000 for his baby mama.
2. Troubles with the Law
After his car was pulled over by the police in 2011, the cops found eight ounces of herbal cannabis hidden in his sports bag. He was arrested and charged with possession with intent to supply a Class B drug. He pleaded guilty to the charge but since the quantity of the drug was small, Joshua who was facing up to 14 years jail term was instead sentenced into a 12-month community order and 100 hours’ unpaid work.
Prior to that, Joshua in 2009 was remanded in Reading Prison, Berkshire for two weeks and put under house arrest for 12 months for a crime he described as “fighting and other crazy stuff.” During this period, he went to all his fights with an electronic tag around his ankle.
3. MBE Award
In 2013, Joshua was awarded an MBE for his services to Britain through his boxing. The MBE which stands for Member of the Order of the British Empire is the third highest ranking Order of the British Empire award.
4. Professional Bricklayer
Before his big break into professional boxing, Joshua worked as a bricklayer to make ends meet. In an interview he granted not long ago, he said he would have returned to bricklaying if he hadn’t succeeded as a boxer.
5. Heavy Weight Champion While Still Reigning as Olympic Champion
Joshua is the third man in boxing history to win a professional world heavyweight champion while still reigning as an Olympic champion. Muhammed Ali was the first to do it, followed by Leon “Neon” Spinks.
6. Mama’s Boy
Despite winning about $18million after defeating Wladimir Klitschko in 2017, Joshua continued to live with his mom for a long time. When asked for his reasons, the champion said he wanted to use the time to bond with his mother.
7. He Is an Old Soul
Not only does he love playing chess, Joshua revealed in an interview that he is a lover of old classical music. One of his all time favorite love songs is Alexander O’Neal’s If you Were Here Tonight.
8. Professional Boxing
He started boxing in 2007 at the age of 18 after his cousin, Ben Ilesanmi, who is also a boxer, convinced him to try it out. The two men made their professional debuts together in 2013.
9. He Loves Nigeria
Although he was born in a town in South East England in 1989, Joshua spent some of his early years in a boarding school in Nigeria before returning to the UK after his parents’ divorce. Still, Joshua loves Nigeria dearly and to prove just how much, he tattooed the map of Africa highlighting Nigeria on his right shoulder. He loves Nigerian food and brags about his country all the time.