Anthony Joshua will have more than a passing interest in Tyson Fury’s attempt to dethrone Wladimir Klitschko to become a world heavyweight champion, given that the winner will be in his sights if he beats Dillian Whyte in December to win the British heavyweight title.
Joshua has stuck his neck on the block by claiming that he expects Klitschko to make a successful defence with a stoppage in either the fifth or the sixth round.
Anyone wanting to follow Joshua’s advice can back a Klitschko success in rounds 5-6 at 13/2.
There are plenty of reasons to believe a Klitschko KO is the most likely outcome. These include the fact that Fury could be rusty having not fought since February and the fact he could start off too aggressively looking to get on the front foot early.
Fury arguably looked to impose himself too much in the early throngs with Steve Cunningham in 2013 and was knocked down in the second round.
It is worth remembering that Cunningham was, in reality, a cruiserweight operating at heavyweight. If he could get a count enforced on Fury, Klitschko should be able to do the same.
A Klitschko success by stoppage is fairly priced at 8/11.
The big question from a round perspective is how defensively and safe Klitschko will be in the early stages?
He is undoubtedly the more skilled boxer and could potentially catch Fury wading in early on, with his right cross once described as the “hardest in history” by former coach Manny Steward.
However, Klitschko may prefer to bide his time and let Fury overdo it in the early rounds, allowing him to take advantage of a tired opponent later on.
Given that the Ukrainian hasn’t stopped an opponent in the second half of a fight since 2010, preference is that he will secure a relatively early stoppage. He hasn’t stopped anyone in the opening three rounds since Ray Austin in 2007 either, suggesting he will work his way into the bout.
Taking this into consideration Klitschko between rounds 4-6 at 4/1 looks the best option among the round betting options.
For those wanting to boost profits further and go one step further than Joshua, the champion’s last two stoppage successes have come in round five against Alex Leapai and Kubrat Pulev. He is 12/1 to do the same against Fury.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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