Oleksandr Usyk stuns Anthony Joshua to win WBA, IBF and WBO world heavyweight titles

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6:14 PM ET

  • Nick Parkinson


      •Reports on boxing for ESPN.co.british isles, as perfectly as several nationwide newspapers
      •Has been reporting on British boxing for around 15 yrs
      •Appears on BoxNation’s Boxing Matters clearly show

LONDON — Oleksandr Usyk shook up the heavyweight division to turn out to be a two-pounds globe winner with a unanimous points decision acquire in excess of Anthony Joshua for the WBA, IBF and WBO world heavyweight titles Saturday.

The Ukrainian’s footwork stored him out of difficulties even though his precise jab and brief combinations piled on the details as he received by the judges’ scores of 117-112, 116-112, 115-113 in front of Joshua’s 66,227-strong home group at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London.

Usyk (19-, 13 KOs), 34, damage Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs), 31, in the third and seventh rounds and virtually finished off the English boxer amid a furious attack late in the 12th spherical. Joshua will want a rematch, but he failed to seriously threaten Usyk, who was faster to the punch and a lot more elusive.

Punch Stats

Punches Joshua Usyk
Whole landed 123 148
Overall thrown 641 529
P.c 19% 28%
Jabs landed 52 52
Jabs thrown 427 309
P.c 12% 17%
Electricity landed 71 96
Electric power thrown 214 220
Percent 33% 44%
— Courtesy of CompuBox

Joshua, the in a natural way more substantial male who has missing the titles for a next time in two a long time, is now counting the appreciable price of an additional shock defeat that finishes his hopes of combating English rival Tyson Fury for all four earth heavyweight titles following yr.

“A devastating defeat,” Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn stated. “Usyk is really match, he’s received wonderful ft, he threw a ton of punches. It was a challenging defeat. [Joshua] received defeat by the far better person on the night time.

“He will want to go straight back into the rematch. The want is nonetheless there. He can do so a lot better in that battle.”

WBC winner Fury defends his title in a 3rd combat with American Deontay Wilder on Oct. 9, but the winner of that battle could now pursue a clash with Usyk, who won the titles in just his third combat at heavyweight soon after unifying all 4 environment cruiserweight titles in 2018.

Most of the planet heavyweight title belts are now again in Ukrainian arms with Usyk’s results, after brothers Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko dominated the division although reigning as champions from 2004 to 2015, which include 1 time period when they held all 4 belts among them. Vitali was there at ringside in London to delight in the second.

Usyk, obligatory challenger for Joshua’s WBO belt, became the third boxer to get environment titles at cruiserweight and heavyweight following David Haye (England) and Evander Holyfield (United States). He began the battle as ESPN’s No. 4 heavyweight.

Once once more the U.K. proved a joyful searching floor for Usyk, with this becoming his third acquire right here in a few years, in addition to his Olympic gold medal at London 2012.

Oleksandr Usyk celebrates just after beautiful Anthony Joshua in entrance of 68,000 in Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, England. Julian Finney/Getty Images

“The struggle went particularly the way I predicted it to go,” Usyk stated.

“There was situations when Anthony pushed me difficult but absolutely nothing exclusive. I had no aim to knock him out. My corner pushed me not to do that. You didn’t see the best Usyk. I can be a great deal superior.”

Joshua weighed in at 240 lbs ., 19 lbs heavier than Usyk who, in spite of remaining a profession-heaviest 221 kilos, was nevertheless noticeably smaller sized than the champion in the ring. Joshua had a 3-inch peak and a 4-inch access advantage as perfectly, but Usyk overcame all those difficulties with his fleet-footed motion, clever boxing abilities and bravery.

Joshua, from Watford, basked in his 1st significant-stadium crowd in the United Kingdom in three many years and seemed relaxed on his way to the ring amid a fusillade of fireworks. Nonetheless, he tensed up in the very first round, which permitted Usyk to score with more shots — like a ideal hook to the aspect of the head.

Usyk, from Kyiv, is good friends with and trains alongside Vasiliy Lomachenko, the brilliant lightweight who has won entire world titles in 3 fat classes. Like Lomachenko, Usyk has chic footwork, and combined with his slick southpaw competencies, proved a hard target for Joshua to find. Usyk could not put a good deal of bodyweight into his photographs in the second spherical, but did get via with a snaking, remaining hand down the middle in one more tentative, close spherical.

Usyk stored obtaining openings, which include a sweeping remaining hand that staggered Joshua in the third spherical. The champion smiled and was not seriously damage, but his corner must have been anxious about Usyk’s rising dominance. Joshua responded with a stiff suitable hand in the fourth, and tightened his protection to deny Usyk prospects to land everything.

Usyk overcame a massive dimensions drawback against Joshua with fleet-footed motion, intelligent boxing and bravery. Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing

The fourth round belonged to Joshua, who also landed a excellent ideal hand in the fifth round but also got caught by a pair of jabs. Usyk’s responsible right-hand direct kept flicking out as he looked to set up his left hand, but he finished the sixth on the back again foot as Joshua landed major, one suitable arms.

Usyk was much better in the seventh, landing a counter remaining and then just about flooring Joshua later in the spherical. The Ukrainian caught Joshua with a left to the jaw that sent the Englishman stumbling backward as the momentum shifted again. But Joshua responded with an aggressive eighth round, landing a suitable uppercut. Usyk then proved much too elusive in the ninth.

Each had cuts around their correct eyes by the 10th spherical, and Joshua’s corner worked at lowering the inflammation prior to the 11th round. With blood streaming down his confront, Usyk landed some sharp punches early in the 11th to set up a very important very last session.

Usyk began whole of energy and hunger and bounced two left hands off Joshua’s head. Joshua saved urgent but could not discover the punches to harm Usyk. The challenger was busier and bolder and completed the winner with a barrage of hooks that remaining Joshua slumped on the ropes and rescued by the last bell. Experienced there been a couple far more seconds, Joshua looked like he would have been stopped.