Anthony Joshua says he is “a different animal, not a sulker” and “will bounce back” from losing his world heavyweight titles to Oleksandr Usyk.
Joshua said he “couldn’t see in round nine” after an eye injury sustained in Saturday’s 12-round fight with the Ukrainian at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
His promoter Eddie Hearn suggested his fighter may have suffered a broken eye socket.
“I can’t go back and sulk – that’s wasting time,” Joshua, 31, said.
Asked after the fight about what went wrong, the defeated Briton said: “I couldn’t see in the ninth round, couldn’t see anything really because my eye was shut.
“It was a good experience because in adversity you’ve just got to learn to control yourself, stay on top of things, so when I couldn’t see anything – it’s the first time that it’s happened in a fight.”
Hearn had said Joshua had given Usyk, 34, too much respect and would have to make “fundamental changes” to regain the WBA, WBO and IBF titles he lost in the fight.
The Briton has a rematch clause in his contract with Usyk, and later confirmed he would take it.
“This experience today is invaluable. This will have a massive benefit in the next fight,” said Joshua, pictured with his swollen eye mid-fight
Joshua added: “When I was walking back through the tunnel, I just said to myself, ‘I’m ready to get back to the gym, I’m ready to just put that work in’.
“I just want to get back to the gym, get back on the grind and improve, so when I fight these good guys and see that they are hurt I can capitalise on the opportunity.
“It was a great lesson today. I know we can look at it from a negative point of view but, for me, I’ve got to take it as a great lesson and build on that situation.
“I never tend to look at the opponent. I just tend to look at myself and realise where I went wrong. So it’s not so much what he done, it’s the opportunities that I gave him. It’s not so much him. I’m just going to go back and look at myself and correct my wrongs.
“I’m a different kind of animal. I’m not a sulker. This is a blessed opportunity, to be able to fight for the heavyweight title of the world, fight good fighters time and time again and for people to come out.
“I’m not going to be going home and be crying about it, because this is war. It’s a long process. This isn’t just one fight and then I’m done.
“I’m going back to look at way that I can improve. Straight away, I’ve already been watching the fight and thinking ‘I could’ve done that better’.” (BBC)