The 27-year-old boxer, Anthony Joshua tweeted a photo of him wearing traditional Islamic clothing, kneeling inside a mosque with his friends while vacationing in Dubai.
The picture which carried the caption ‘Besides luck, hard work & talent.. Prayer is a solid foundation. It was nice to join my brother as he led through afternoon prayer (asr),’ received a large amount of anti-Muslim abuse as many of his followers and fans showed their distaste in him showing respect to the Islamic faith.
Some of the hate included:
@anthonyfjoshua pic.twitter.com/4XXjdLKaDs— LordHoratioNelson (@LordHNelson) January 17, 2017
@anthonyfjoshua WILL NOT BE PAYING FOR YOUR FIGHTS AGAIN YOUVE JOINED THE DEATH CULT ????????????????— John "smasher" Davis (@EDLjohndavis) January 17, 2017
@anthonyfjoshua time to unfollow.— Sceptical (@scepticalmouse) January 17, 2017
@anthonyfjoshua . Islam has ruined Arab countries, now they want to bring it to our beautiful Christian countries and ruin ours too? BYE!— Kelly Vander (@KellyVander3) January 17, 2017
Anthony Joshua who also has been awarded an MBE and won gold at the 2012 Olympics, recieved messages of support from his real fans.
@anthonyfjoshua might of lost a couple narrow minded fake fans but youve gained the love and respect of thousands BIG up AJ— Jaykae (@Jaykae10) January 17, 2017
@anthonyfjoshua to all the people hating. Muhammad Ali was a Muslim and the greatest of all time, do you guys hate him as well??— Naz (@n42imrashid) January 17, 2017
@anthonyfjoshua Dear Muslims, sorry about the morons disrespecting your religion. I bet not 1 of them could name the 5 pillars without Googling. Luv from UK— ExerciseClassesKiddy (@ECKidderminster) January 17, 2017
@EmeraldCityTrax @anthonyfjoshua lies and slander spread by those with no knowledge. May Allah guide you to the right path— esco (@memphistiano) January 17, 2017
Anthony Joshua has stated his connection with religion in past interviews, in an interview with Daily Mail, "Prayer is a method practised from ancient days, so it's very important for us to maintain a spiritual connection, something that people, gladiators would do years ago, so we're just maintaining that routine,". He went on to say, "I don't have a preferred religion: I'd have to do research. I was born a Christian but as I've grown into my own man I don't attach myself to a religion; 100 percent I have faith. Then it's locking into what suits me."
Anthony's next fight is against formidable Wladimir Klitschko on April 29 at Wembley