Oleksandr Usyk defeats Anthony Joshua to retain world heavyweight titles.

Ukrainian Boxer, Oleksandr Usyk has retained his world Heavy Weight Titles after a thrilling rematch with former title Holder, Antony Joshua in Saudi Arabia. Usyk was declared the winner by a split points decision after the duo went the full twelve rounds-113 to 115, 115 to 113, and 116 to 112.

What was AJ’s reaction to the result?
After the judges’ decision, Antony Joshua, who seemed frustrated threw two of the title bets over the side of the ropes before storming out of the ring. However, he returned shortly and grabbed the microphone to vent his anger, telling the cheering crowd in the King Abdullah Sports City:

“If you knew my story, you would understand the passion. I ain’t no amateur boxer, from five years old that was an elite prospect from youth. I was going to jail, I got bail, and I started training my ass off, I wanted to be able to fight. This guy beat me tonight, maybe I could have done better, but it shows the level of hard work I put in, so please give him a round of applause as our heavyweight champion of the world.”

What else happened?
In his victory speech, Usyk paid tribute to the Ukrainian military, saying he is now only interested in fighting WBC champion, Tyson Fury in his next match. He said: “I did this victory for my country, for all people, militaries who are defending the country, thank you very, very much. “I’m sure Tyson Fury is not retired yet. I’m convinced he wants to fight me. I want to fight him, and if I’m not fighting Tyson Fury, I’m not fighting at all.” He added.

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How did both perform in the match?
The rematch in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, follows their last year’s bout where Usyk won the
WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight belts from the Nigerian-born British Boxer. Though the fight was different this time with Joshua giving a better performance against the Ukrainian compared to that of last year, landing blows and occasionally unloading on Usyk. But it was Usyk who came out on top, landing more punches on his opponent with a higher work rate than AJ.

After the match, the pair posed briefly with the Ukrainian flag in a stand of solidarity in defiance of Russia’s ongoing war within the country.