AJ reveals Fury sparring ‘war’

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Anthony Joshua has shed more light on his sparring 'war' with Tyson Fury and reveals that his heavyweight rival tipped him to win a world title.

Britain's two heavyweight world champions could meet in the near future if they both successfully defend their world titles this summer. 

Joshua makes the first defence of his IBF belt against Dominic Breazeale at The O2 on June 25, while Fury puts his WBO and WBA belts on the line in rematch with Wladimir Klitschko on July 9.

Both Joshua and Fury have called for a big domestic battle in recent months, but they have previously shared the ring before in a much-talked about sparring session over five years ago.

Joshua offers more insight into what happened when they both traded punches, with a luxury watch at stake, and believes there was mutual respect when they left the ring.

"This was early on when I was an amateur, so I didn't even know who Tyson Fury was," Joshua told Sky Sports.

"This was the time when he was fighting John McDermott, so he was in London at the time, come down from Manchester.

"I remember reading that Tyson Fury is going around different gyms sparring and if anyone can knock him out, they get to keep his Rolex. If you know me, I'm hungry. I was hungrier back then. Those assets and stuff were so far out of reach to me.

"I remember him popping in the gym and then coach says: 'All right Josh, you're sparring.' In the boxing gym, there is no word called 'no'.

"I just got my head guard on, gum shield in, and we just cracked on. Me and him just had a straight war. What I learned about Fury is, we've got the same heart. We're both fighting people and we go to war. 

"I didn't manage to knock him out. We both hit each other with some big shots, powerful shots.

"Years ago he predicted 'watch out for the kid, he'll be heavyweight champion of the world one day' and he got his prediction right."