Britain’s Joshua was outclassed by Ukrainian rival Usyk in their first fight at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in September 2021, losing his world heavyweight titles in the process.
Anthony Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk fight again in a colossal heavyweight title rematch in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia tonight.
11 months has now passed since their first clash at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, when the ultra-slick Usyk delivered a punch-perfect display to dominate a dazed and sluggish champion.
who relinquished the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, and IBO belts after only his second professional defeat and first since being stunned by Andy Ruiz Jr on his US debut at Madison Square Garden two years previously.
Joshua got his tactics wholly wrong in north London, foolishly trying to outbox and outwit the skilled former undisputed cruiserweight king, who triumphed via unanimous decision with scores of 117–112, 116–112 and 115–113 and came within a whisker of achieving a deserved late knockout.
The 2012 Olympic gold medalist has since split from long-time trainer Rob McCracken and traveled in search of fresh inspiration for arguably the biggest fight of his illustrious career to date.
going to America and eventually linking up with former super-featherweight world champion Robert Garcia. The rematch was originally planned for May but the ongoing situation in the champion’s homeland put that on hold.
Usyk travelled back to Ukraine and joined the military in defence of his nation after the Russian invasion which began in February. The 35-year-old later received permission from his country’s sports minister to return to his training camp and gear up for the epic rematch with Joshua, 32.
The WBA (Super), IBF, WBO and IBO world titles will all be on the line, as will the Ring Magazine strap after WBC champion Tyson Fury confirmed his retirement. After much hype and anticipation, Joshua failed to deliver inside the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium back in September 2021 and was well and truly outclassed by Usyk.
The Ukrainian, who is undefeated in 19 professional fights so far in his boxing career, was the convincing winner against Joshua, who was outclassed, outmanoeuvred and simply outboxed.
The popular and charismatic Usyk has endured a difficult time since his crowning achievement last September, returning to his native Ukraine earlier this year following the Russian invasion and taking up arms by joining a territorial defence battalion in Kyiv.
He left back in March to prepare for his first title defence at heavyweight, where he has only fought three times as a pro, a huge bout with enormous stakes that has been dubbed as the ‘Rage on the Red Sea’.
Usyk is rightly seen in his war-torn homeland as an ambassador for Ukrainian resistance overseas and says he plans to return to Kyiv later this year. Joshua weighed in 17st 6st..and Usyk was pretty much the same as last time on 15st 11lbs.
There had been talk Usyk was going to bulk up but he’s around the same as last time while AJ is 4lbs more. Stick with us here on SunSport as we bring you the latest reaction from the weigh-in and preview the huge main event this weekend.
The first fight went the full distance, so it will be interesting to see how Joshua tweaks his game plan in the rematch to try and get more success; is Usyk just a class above?
Well, nevertheless, an exciting fight is poised and we have all of the details for the rematch.
— DAZN Boxing (@DAZNBoxing) August 20, 2022
Anthony Joshua is rattling Usyk here 👌 pic.twitter.com/kFdWauf5Wm
— Chinaza #PeterObiSoldier Ⓜ️ (@MuchTalksBlog1) August 20, 2022
— DenisHadzovic (@HadzovicDenis) August 20, 2022
Anthony Joshua is giving Oleksandr Usyk a run for his money 😳
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) August 20, 2022
— ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) August 20, 2022