Oleksandr Usyk

  • WINS
  • Losses
  • Draws
  • ko's
  • Alias
  • Height
  • Reach
  • Division
  • Heavyweight
  • Age
  • 37
  • Country
  • UkraineUkraine
  • Born in
  • Simferopol, Crimea
  • 63.64%
  • Bouts
  • 22
  • 189
  • Stance
  • S

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Early Life and Amateur Career


Oleksandr Usyk’s journey into the world of boxing is a tale of early exposure to sports and a meteoric rise through the amateur ranks. Born on January 17, 1987, in Simferopol, Crimean Oblast, Ukrainian SSR, Usyk was first introduced to sports through football. It wasn’t until he was 15 that he turned to boxing, a shift that would define his career and life. The decision came after he attended a local boxing gym, where the sport’s discipline and individual nature captivated him. Recognizing his potential, his coaches encouraged him to pursue boxing seriously.


Usyk’s amateur career is distinguished by a series of remarkable achievements. He quickly made a name for himself with his southpaw stance and exceptional agility. In 2006, he won his first major medal—a silver at the European Championships. His skill and dedication led him to compete in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, although he did not medal there, it set the stage for further successes. Usyk’s relentless work and improvements culminated in 2011 when he won gold at the World Championships held in Baku, Azerbaijan. This victory was a testament to his growing prowess in the ring.


The pinnacle of Usyk’s amateur career came at the 2012 London Olympics. Representing Ukraine, he competed in the heavyweight division (91 kg) and showcased his tactical intelligence and physical dominance throughout the tournament. Usyk won the gold medal by defeating Italy’s Clemente Russo in the final, a victory that not only highlighted his skill and strategic approach but also brought him international acclaim.


Throughout his amateur career, Usyk amassed an impressive record of 335 wins and only 15 losses. His achievements in the amateur boxing scene established him as one of the sport’s promising talents, setting a solid foundation for his subsequent professional career. Usyk’s transition from amateur to professional was eagerly anticipated, and he carried the momentum of his amateur success into the professional ranks, where he continued to build on his reputation as a skilled and formidable boxer.


Professional Career


Oleksandr Usyk began his professional boxing career at the age of 26, signing with K2 Promotions in late 2013. He made a successful debut on November 9, 2013, defeating Mexican boxer Felipe Romero via a fifth-round knockout. Shortly thereafter, Usyk continued to impress by stopping Epifanio Mendoza in four rounds in December 2013. His rise continued as he scored another knockout against Ben Nsafoah in April 2014 in Germany, followed by a victory over Cesar David Crenz in Ukraine a month later.


Usyk’s first significant title came when he won the interim WBO Inter-Continental cruiserweight title on October 4, 2014, by defeating South African Daniel Bruwer via a seventh-round technical knockout. He successfully defended this title against Danie Venter and later against Andrey Knyazev in Kyiv, demonstrating his dominance in the cruiserweight division.


On August 29, 2015, Usyk knocked out Johnny Muller in the third round, and in December of the same year, he defeated Pedro Rodriguez, solidifying his number one position in the WBO rankings. This string of victories set up a title challenge against undefeated Polish champion Krzysztof Głowacki in Gdansk on September 17, 2016, where Usyk captured the WBO cruiserweight championship by unanimous decision. Usyk then defended his title against Thabiso Mchunu in December 2016 in California, winning by knockout in the ninth round. His next defense was against Michael Hunter in April 2017, where Usyk won by unanimous decision, displaying his skill and endurance over twelve rounds.


Entering the World Boxing Super Series, Usyk faced Marco Huck in September 2017 and advanced by defeating him via TKO. He continued his quest to unify the cruiserweight titles by beating Mairis Briedis in January 2018 and then Murat Gassiev in July 2018 in the tournament final, becoming the undisputed cruiserweight champion. Usyk made his heavyweight debut on October 12, 2019, against Chazz Witherspoon, securing a victory when Witherspoon retired after the seventh round. Usyk’s next significant fight came against Derek Chisora on October 31, 2020, which he won by unanimous decision, further solidifying his position in the heavyweight division.


In September 2021, Usyk faced Anthony Joshua, winning by unanimous decision to capture the WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight titles. A rematch with Joshua occurred on August 20, 2022, in Saudi Arabia, where Usyk retained his titles via a split decision. Looking ahead, Usyk is scheduled to fight Tyson Fury on May 18, 2024, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for the undisputed heavyweight championship. This bout promises to be a pivotal moment in Usyk’s career as he seeks to solidify his legacy in the heavyweight division.


Notable Quotes:


“If you put a person in a training gym made out of entire gold, it doesn’t guarantee that this person will become a champion. But if you put a person in the basement, then there is a high chance that he will get out of this basement as a champion.”


“Fans can look forward to watching me take on the biggest and best names in the sport.”


“The Olympics is still my greatest achievement… I have many belts, but there is only one Olympic gold.”