Former world heavyweight champion Lennox Le says he is “disappointed” after called him a “clown” who he does not respect.

Following Joshua’s defeat by Andy Ruiz Jr on 1 June, Le questioned whether the Briton was fully prepared.

He also tweeted that Joshua’s trainer Rob McCracken may not offer all that is needed to “rule” at heavyweight.

“Lennox is a clown. I don’t respect Lennox,” Joshua, 29, told Sky. “Me and Lennox are cut from a different cloth.”

Joshua said he chose to “enjoy” and “appreciate” the next generation of fighters coming through, adding: “Lennox isn’t like that.”

Le responds as Ruiz Jr wades in

Andy Ruiz Jr responded to a tweet asking who would win in a fight between Joshua and Lewis

Le, 53, claimed the mantle of ‘undisputed champion’ at heavyweight in 1999, when he held the division’s three recognised belts – , and WBC.

The strengthened reputation of the WBO title has led to present-day fighters seeking four major belts to claim the same ‘undisputed’ description.

Joshua was chasing that honour but could not agree a fight with WBC champion and ultimately went on to lose his , and WBO titles to Ruiz in .

In his interview with Sky Sports, he said he was no longer “worrying about undisputed”.

Le tweeted: “He’s right! We are cut from a different cloth. Undisputed wasn’t something I ‘worried’ about. It was something I went after until it was accomplished!

“Disappointed in AJ’s words but I understand that this ‘jealousy’ narrative was only fabricated after I criticised them for Wilder negotiations. All of the sudden I’m a hater.

“Ask who benefits from such a simple-minded narrative? Not AJ. Not me.”

The debate between the two former world champions has prompted plenty of reaction on Twitter – and when one account asked who would win in a fight between the pair, unified world heavyweight champion Ruiz replied: “Lennox all day.”

Joshua and Ruiz are at a stand-off in negotiations for a proposed rematch in S Arabia on 7 December.

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