Mindanao Times

Ruiz rues 3-month party


ANDY Ruiz blamed three months of partying for his one-sided world heavyweigh­t championsh­ip defeat to Anthony Joshua on Saturday, admitting he had failed to train seriously for his first title defense. The 30-year-old MexicanAme­rican stunned the world in June when he floored Joshua four times on the way to a sensationa­l upset victory in their first fight at Madison Square Garden. Ruiz had drawn gasps of disbelief on Friday when the weighin revealed he had ballooned to 283 pounds (128.4 kilograms), fully 15 pounds heavier than his fighting weight six months ago. Ruiz’s poor conditioni­ng was ruthlessly exposed by Joshua on Saturday, who nimbly outboxed the chubby champion. “Three months of partying and celebratin­g affected me, what can I say?” Ruiz told reporters after the fight. Asked what he’d do differentl­y if granted a rematch with Joshua, Ruiz replied: “Listen to my coach. Listen to my dad. And take it more seriously.” Ruiz, who was granted a ritzy homecoming parade in his California­n hometown of Imperial following his win in June, said he had started his training camp for the rematch too late. Trainer Manny Robles had wanted Ruiz back in the gym in July. Ruiz only started his camp in September. “I’m OK, I’m just a little disappoint­ed,” Ruiz said. “I should have listened to them. I tried to do the training on my own. I should have listened to them more. There’s no excuses... the partying and all that stuff got the best of me.” Robles meanwhile refused to point the finger at Ruiz. “You’ve got to be with your fighter 100 percent,” he said. “I’m not the first coach where situations happen in camp. I have to apologise to him because this is a team effort and when you don’t win it hurts. It always hurts.”

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