Nobody is Unbeatable, Not Even Anthony Joshua

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Nobody is Unbeatable, Not Even Anthony Joshua

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Every once in a while, a very special athlete will come around and convince sports-watchers that they are unbeatable. They’ll shock the world to the point of becoming invincible in the minds of those who watch them. In boxing, this athlete was Anthony Joshua.

Joshua has had his fair share of critics over the years. People have have said that he’s dodgy, and stays away from opponents who have what the public believe is a fair chance of beating him, like Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury.

But even with the criticism he received, it’s no doubt that Joshua is one of the greatest boxers on planet earth. He’s rightfully received this title, though. Joshua received a gold medal in the 2012 Olympics and, for years, managed to hold three of the four major championships in boxing.

Even though boxing is known for its upsets and surprises, I’ll be honest — Joshua convinced me that he could not be beaten, at least at his current age of just 29. I simply couldn’t imagine anyone in the current heavyweight division being able to beat someone as technically talented and physically impressive as Joshua.

This was an incredibly flawed way of thinking, though. And I learned that lesson on June 1, 2019, when Joshua lost his first fight in his professional career to Andy Ruiz.

When I first heard about the loss, I couldn’t believe it. I immediately thought that there must have been a failure on anyone but Joshua’s part. Ruiz wasn’t even supposed to be Joshua’s opponent to begin with and there was no way in my mind that he could win, no matter how good he is because nobody could beat Joshua, especially a fill-in.

But then I watched the fight. I was wrong — very wrong. Joshua did, in fact, lose by technical knockout in round seven — and it was no fluke — he was done.

This loss made me realize something: Nobody is unbeatable.

This should have been obvious to me, already, considering the fact that boxing has always been loved, in part, for its surprises and shocks. But it wasn’t.

Oftentimes when we see an athlete who seems to defeat all the odds and win, like Joshua did when he fought boxing legend Wladimir Klitschko, it’s easy to get caught up in believing that they can never possibly be beaten. If they were able to do what seemed like the impossible, then how could they be taken out?

Joshua seemingly has everything — an impressive physique and shockingly impressive skills in his sport, but now he doesn’t have championship belts. He’s not unbeatable, it just took a very special and talented boxer like Ruiz to show us that.

Header Image: Joshua in his fight with Klitschko in 2017. Credit: Karl-Ludwig Poggemann on Flickr (CC BY 2.0)