Anthony Joshua loses to brilliant Oleksandr Usyk on points in thrilling fight

Don’t miss a thing by getting the Daily Star’s biggest headlines straight to your inbox!

Anthony Joshua went from champion to chumpion after suffering a shock loss to Oleksandr Usyk in London.

Joshua lost on a unanimous points decision to the Ukranian to surrender his world heavyweight belts in front of stunned fans inside the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

And with it goes his dream of a unification fight with British rival Tyson Fury that the whole world of boxing had wanted to see.

This was just the second loss of Joshua's career and will lead to a huge inquest into how he was schooled by someone who stepped up from the cruiserweight division.

But he could have no complaints after being dominated from start to finish in whatwas the biggest fight in Britain since 2018, when Joshua beat Alexander Povetkin at Wembley.

It had been a brave scrap for Joshua, 31, to take on considering what he was putting on the line against an opponent more than capable of causing an upset.

Usyk was no stranger to the big stage himself, having won gold at the 2012 London Olympics before turning professional the following year and going on to become undisputed world champion at cruiserweight.

The 34-year-old has become renowned for being a technical genius with fast hands and has even been compared to Muhammad Ali in some quarters.

Usyk just happens to also share the same birthday as the 'greatest' and knew deep down he would need the sort of performance the American icon used to produce to stand a chance of taking down Joshua.

Usyk might have been unbeaten in 18 professional fights but was stepping up to a higher weight division and Joshua was bigger, stronger and heavier than his dangerous opponent.

The Briton is also on a mission to become the undisputed heavyweight champion and knew defeat here would leave any plans to face Fury in absolute tatters.

There has not been an undisputed heavyweight champion since Britain's Lennox Lewis held all the belts in 2000 and Joshua knows repeating the feat would cement his status as a boxing legend.

Fury is expected to beat Deontay Wilder for a a second time when he faces the American in Las Vegas next month, so Joshua had to keep his end of the bargain here and dispatch Usyk.

The last time Joshua was in the ring had been nine months ago, when Covid restrictions meant just 1,000 people saw him knock out Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev in the ninth round.

Bit big time boxing was back with a bang as 67,000, including a host of celebrities, roared on Joshua as he bounced to the ring to a 'Rocky 4' soundtrack to pump the crowd up even more.

But it was the elusive jack-in-a-box Usyk who dominated from the off and landed the most telling punches in the opening exchanges, rocking Joshua with a powerful left hand in the third round.

Joshua responded with a good shot of his own in the next, before edging the fifth and sixth rounds.

Back came Usyk, tagging Joshua with two left hooks before knocking his rival backwards with a thundering straight shot to take control once more, despite suffering a cut above his right eye.

He caught Joshua again in the ninth and the champion needed to dig deep and produce something special to remain king of the ring.

But it was Usyk who kept landing all the shots with that lazer like left hand to come within seconds of knocking Joshua out before the final bell tolled to leave the man from Watford dethroned and devastated.

  • Boxing
  • Anthony Joshua

Source: Read Full Article