David Haye believes he’ll be able to see all Anthony Joshua’s shots coming if he challenges for the IBF world heavyweight title.
Haye (28-2-KO26) was ringside working for Sky Sports to watch Joshua (17-0-KO17) make the first defence of his crown in front of an adoring O2 crowd and was keen to discuss a prospective match-up between the two Londoners.
Despite recently returning from a three-and-a-half-year break from the sport in time to find Olympic gold medallist Joshua completing his rise to the summit of the professional game, Haye feels that at the age of 35 he possesses the movement required to negate the champion’s work.
Haye, who is already ranked third by the IBF, told Sky Sports: “I’m working my way up the rankings. When I watch Anthony Joshua fight, I always look at him as an opponent and don’t watch too much what his opponent’s doing.
“I watch him, his punch variety and the way he reacts to things coming at him. The more I’ve watched him, the more confident I’ve got. He’s looked better winning his fights in style but the way he’s won them, I don’t believe it’s anywhere near enough to beat me in any way, shape or form.
“I don’t believe he’s anywhere near as fast as I am. I could see every shot coming. I do a thing when I’m watching someone and I think if he’s going to jab. I’m looking at him and slipping the shots for the opponent, but the opponent takes them clean in the face.
“I don’t see any issues whatsoever so I’m patiently waiting until he believes he’s ready because when he is, I’m ready to go. I’m not going to tell you how I’ll do it, but it will be done.”
Haye has needed fewer than three rounds to dispatch his two opponents since making a comeback and is due to face veteran Shannon Briggs next up but when questioned as to his readiness for the step up, issued an uncompromising answer.
He said: “I do not need any quality of opposition. I don’t get hit. Wladimir Klitschko landed two or three punches on me and Dereck Chisora landed the same. I don’t get hit – that’s my quality. That’s my thing.
“That type of elusiveness is what gives me the big advantage against him, in my opinion. The keys would be my punch evasion and counter punching. I can see his shots coming and then load big power punches behind it. I don’t see it as an issue whatsoever.
“I’m so calm and cool about it because I know it’s just a matter of turning up. Every fight that goes by, he gets a little better but so do I. The guy I’m fighting at the moment are not in my league but in my opinion I can beat anybody.
“If I ever fight Tony Bellew then it’ll be at heavyweight. I’m a heavyweight. I moved up and gave away seven stone in weight against Nikolay Valuev. If he wants to step up then he’ll have to put a little bit of weight on but we’re similar sizes.”