By Williams ‘Bantu’ Irubor
Anthony Joshua has revealed ahead of his showdown with Wladimir Klitschko that he is aiming to become a billionaire through boxing.
The IBF champion (18-0 KO18) will next defend his heavyweight title against the Ukrainian (64-4 KO53) at Wembley Stadium in front of 90,000 fans on April 29, live on Sky Sports Box Office, with the vacant WBA ‘super’ title also on the line.
The 27-year-old Olympic gold medal winner insists his main aim is to become one of the world’s best fighters, but he has also revealed he has lofty financial goals, claiming he “needs to be a billionaire”.
“It’s hard and I do understand the 10,000-hour rule and all that. But the thing is, I don’t get paid for overtime. Do you know what I’m saying?
“When I first started, the aim was to become a multimillionaire. But now there are ordinary people, grandmas and granddads, who are worth millions just because of property prices. So the new school of thought is that I need to be a billionaire.
“Being a millionaire is good, but you have to set your sights higher. If I’m making £10m from my next fight, my next target has to be making ten times that. And if I get to £100m-150m, why not go for the billion? I know self-made billionaires. It’s hard, but it’s possible.”
Ahead of his clash with Klitschko, with whom Joshua sparred in 2014 at the 41-year-old’s Austrian training base, the Brit has insisted 2017 is the year where he will invest everything into boxing.
“I would honestly say I am smarter now. What’s around me hasn’t changed – my team, the people I trust and love, that’s the same. And my routine hasn’t changed,” Joshua added.
“The struggle is still the same: camp, train, fight, rest, recover. But I am always learning and improving as a fighter and as a man.
“The big change, though, is this is the year when I have to embrace my job more. To get to where I want to go, to achieve what I want to achieve, I have to invest all I have in boxing.”