Oleksandr Usyk easily defeated Anthony Joshua in their rematch on Saturday in Jeddah to retain his heavyweight championships by split decision.
Throughout the 12-round fight, the 35-year-old Ukrainian proved untouchable and maintained his steely composure to overwhelm Joshua with a barrage of powerful strikes. In the ninth round, Joshua appeared to stop Usyk’s momentum and scored a series of blows on his opponent before losing the fight.
Oleksandr Usyk finally proved to be the stronger opponent and received scores of 115-113 and 116-112 from two judges to maintain his WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight belts. He was given a score of 115-113 by one judge.
Oleksandr Usyk Won By Split Decision
In the meantime, Ramla Ali triumphed in Saudi Arabia’s first-ever female boxing battle against Crystal Garcia Nova of the Dominican Republic.
The 32-year-old Ali triumphed via knockout in the opening round, bringing her career record to 7-0. The “Rage on the Red Sea,” the title of the heavyweight title rematch, perfectly encapsulated the atmosphere of the evening.
After losing to Usyk for the second time in a row, the 32-year-old British fighter grabbed two of the Ukrainian’s belts, flung them out of the ring, and ran into his dressing room. He then came back and grabbed the microphone to make an eloquent speech. Usyk, who has a stake in the conflict because of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, declared victory against this backdrop.
The 35-year-old returned to his native country earlier this year and enlisted in Kyiv’s territorial defense battalion to aid in the war effort.
Oleksandr Usyk was given the go-ahead to resume his workouts and get ready for his bout against Joshua in March, despite his resistance at the time.
Just one week after the WBC heavyweight champion declared he is prepared to “walk away” from boxing, Oleksandr Usyk made it obvious that he wants to take on Tyson Fury.