Eleven months after dethroning Anthony Joshua, Oleksandr Usyk confirmed this Saturday in Saudi Arabia that he was indeed superior to the Briton to retain his IBF-WBA-WBO heavyweight titles and add the prestigious The Ring belt to his collection. Is Joshua finished? What would a unification clash against Tyson Fury look like if Usyk managed to pull him out of retirement? The RMC Fighter Club is back with the debrief of the biggest boxing fight of the summer.
He was inhabited by an inner fire impossible to extinguish, carried by an entire country caught up in an armed conflict for six months. He was above all the best boxer. A genius of the noble art who has already earned his place at the table of all-time greats (the greatest of all time). IBF-WBA-WBO heavyweight champion since his victory over Anthony Joshua last September, Oleksandr Usyk has added the prestigious belt The Ring to his collection by inflicting a new defeat on the Briton this Saturday in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia).
A success on split decision – a judge gave “AJ” winner – which does not suffer from any dispute as the Ukrainian, first boxer in history to win the belt The Ring in light-heavyweight and heavyweight, knew how to delight with his movements, his technique and his ability to adapt to the opponent’s plan. Aware of having tried too hard to play the technician against the best technician during the first fight, Joshua had changed everything for this revenge: a new coach renowned for the aggressiveness of his boxers, Robert Garcia, and the desire to go more seek out brawls and knockouts to take advantage of his physical advantages and superior power.
Not forgetting to focus more on body punches, which had already hurt Usyk (by his own admission) in their first dance. The Briton did all that, and well, but it was still insufficient in the face of the Ukrainian’s pugilistic qualities in this new duel of the 2012 Olympic champions. Enough to push Joshua to “crack” at the microphone a few seconds after the fight in an understandable scene by his frustration but which will not have helped his image.
And now, what next for “AJ”? While the boy has already announced that he wants to get back in the ring before the end of the year and become world champion again for the third time in the future, anything but grotesque when he is only thirty-two years old, the possibilities for many remain to him. A 100% British duel to revive (Derek Chisora or Dillian Whyte)? Finally rubbing shoulders with Deontay Wilder for a less prestigious fight than a few years ago but which still makes you want to? A trilogy against Andy Ruiz?
Usyk is waiting for only one name: Tyson Fury. The “Gypsy King”, still WBC champion for the moment (he has until August 26 to confirm his retirement to the Mexican organization or not), is expected by the Ukrainian for the first total unification with four belts – and even five with version The Ring – in heavyweight history after having already achieved this performance in the light-heavyweight category. And Fury doesn’t seem against listening to him on social media since Saturday.
According to DailyMail, negotiations are even already in progress between the two camps with Saudi Arabia candidate to welcome this shock and which would have the idea to do it on December 17, that is to say… the day before the final of the Football World Cup at neighboring Qatar. But then, what scenario(s) to imagine between the two? The RMC Fighter Club, RMC Sport podcast dedicated to combat sports, is back to debrief the biggest fight of the summer in boxing and answer all these questions.