The Mexican-American Andy Ruiz Jr dropped Anthony Joshua four times to make history as the first heavyweight champion from Mexico and end his opponent’s unbeaten streak.
Anthony Joshua loses to Andy Ruiz Jr in one of the greatest upsets in the history of the sport.
Despite Anthony Joshua putting Ruiz down in round three, the new champion went on to put Joshua down twice in the same round before disrupting whatever plans Joshua had with his hand speed and power.
Anthony Joshua’s bid to make a splash in his US debut ended in misery for the three belt heavyweight world champion with a stunning loss to underdog Andy Ruiz at Madison Square Garden on Saturday.
Ruiz recorded a monster upset, by knocking down Britain’s Joshua four times to take the World Boxing Association, International Boxing Federation and World Boxing Organization titles.
The 29-year-old Ruiz came into the fight as a massive 32-1 underdog. But he won it by TKO in the middle of the seventh when the referee stopped it at 1:26 of the round after the fourth knockdown.
Two knockdowns resulted from this and the champion only just survived the round by the skin of his teeth.
Anthony Joshua seems confused throughout the fight and was largely fighting to survive despite been the bigger man.
This shock was almost as seismic as Mike Tyson’s defeat by Buster Douglas. Not quite as massive since Joshua has not achieved such greatness as Iron Mike but remarkable because it was delivered by a Mexican warrior we had foolishly under-rated because of his unathletic appearance.
And Tyson did not surrender the way Joshua did after one minute and 27 seconds of the seventh round.
Joshua, with however much of his self-belief is left, will enforce his rematch clause but there can be no certainty that the outcome will be any different. Even though that fight will be in London.
Whether he will ever fight his nemesis Deontay Wilder again, let alone for the cherished undisputed championship, is hardly a question worth putting now.
Ruiz, who was born in San Diego and carries a US passport, considers himself Mexican and is now the first heavyweight champion of Mexican descent.
“I just wanna thank God for giving me this victory. I just feel so good,” Andy Ruiz Jr said in his post-fight intervew.
“This is what I’ve been dreaming about, I can’t believe I just made my dreams come true.
“I just had to knock him down back. I’m a Mexican warrior, talking about the Mexican style, I just proved it.
“Of course [I want the rematch] but right now I wanna celebrate. I just made history for Mexico.”
“I think Mexico has a champ in every weight and now we have a heavyweight champion. I am so happy,” said Ruiz.
The loss will be devastating for the career of Joshua who was looking past Ruiz for a superfight unification showdown with WBC champion Deontay Wilder.
Together with Briton Tyson Fury they are trying to revive the sport’s prestige division but the inability to get them together in the ring had left a sour taste in the mouth of boxing fans.
One of the first to pile on Joshua was Wilder who tweeted, “He wasn’t a true champion. His whole career was consistent of lies, contradiction and gifts …. now we know who was running from who!!!!”