Charles Martin and Anthony Joshua are scheduled to do battle on April 9th at London’s O2 Arena in what promises to be the biggest challenge of each man’s career thus far.
In anticipation of their Pay-per-view showdown, the heavyweight pair recently sat down with Johnny Nelson to film Martin vs Joshua: The Gloves are Off. While the finished product didn’t exude the same heat as AJ’s last appearance on the show, opposite bitter rival Dillian Whyte, it was intriguing nonetheless.
The most interesting segment of the Sky Sports promotional vehicle came during it’s opening minutes, when the fighters spoke about their lives before boxing.
The 29-year-old Martin, a native of St. Louis, Missouri, talked about growing up “hard and hungry” without a father to support him. “I got a lot of pent-up anger inside me,” said Martin. Asked by host Johnny Nelson, who it must be said plays his role in these shows very well, why he felt such anger, Martin simply replied “Life”.
Joshua’s own story also reflected a troubled past.
Earlier in the week, the 2012 Olympic gold medallist told The Sun that he would be in jail if it wasn’t for boxing and he once again spoke of his run-ins with the law here, revealing how they helped him find the sport.
Perhaps due to an understanding of each other’s past adversity, there seemed to be a great deal of respect between the fighters, although there was also a noticeable tension that began to simmer somewhat towards the show’s close.
On a side note, don’t be fooled by the frequent references to Martin as the world heavyweight champion. The IBF title that he holds has little value. It was stripped from the true champion, Tyson Fury, because of his refusal to fight undeserving mandatory challenger Vyacheslav Glazkov, who Martin then beat to scoop the strap in January.
This is not a world heavyweight title fight. But that’s okay, because it is an exciting match-up between two young, promising, undefeated fighters, and it doesn’t need a flimsy paper title to act as it’s promotional aid.
You can watch the entire episode below….