Anthony Joshua's Trainer Rob McCracken Warned About 'Potentially Fatal Injury' After His Concussion Admission
Anthony Joshua's trainer Rob McCracken has come under fire after he said that he knew his fighter had suffered concussion in the third round of the seventh round loss to Andy Ruiz Jr.
In June Joshua was on the wrong side of a huge boxing upset as he lost his WBA (Super), WBO and IBF titles to Ruiz Jr after being knocked down four times in the fight.
There were many theories as to why AJ lost the fight but trainer McCracken revealed that his fighter had been concussed early in the fight.
Now McKracken, who is also Team GB's Performance Director for boxing, has come under fire from brain injury charity Headway, who have warned the coach his decision could have caused a fatal injury.
Speaking to the Sun deputy chief executive Luke Griggs of the charity said, "It's a shocking admission but it's highly unlikely that this is an isolated incident.
"Trainers have a duty of care to their boxers and it seems clear that Anthony Joshua's trainer's sole priority was winning that fight, not protecting the fighter from a potentially fatal injury.
"We know once you've had a concussion, any subsequent blow can exacerbate the damage. You are most at risk of having a particularly serious or fatal brain injury if the brain has already been damaged and a concussion has already been sustained.
"In that point, he was particularly vulnerable to a more serious injury. One wonders how many deaths in the ring over the years have resulted from a win-at-all-costs mentality."
Answering all the rumours about what had happened at the loss to Ruiz at Madison Square Garden McCracken said, "I know him better than all these experts who virtually don't know him or have met him once or twice.
"I knew he was concussed and I'm trying to get him through a few more rounds, one round at a time, and see where he's at.
"But he was glazy-eyed from when he got caught with that initial shot in round three and he carried that with him up until the end."
Other sports have come under scrutiny in recent years because of their protocols for head injuries, including NFL, football and rugby, and the latest admission from McCracken will shine a light on boxing too.
In July boxer Maxim Dadashev died following his fight with Subriel Matias after trainer Buddy McGirt had told the boxer to stop fighting through fear of his health.
Will McCracken be called on to pull AJ out of the second fight or will it be redemption for the British boxer?