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Heavy scene gets exciting

Sports 24 Aug, 2022 Follow News

Deontay Wilder believes he can be champ again

Oleksandr Usyk comprehensively beat Joshua

The heavyweight boxing scene is at its most interesting for years after Oleksandr Usyk won his rematch with Anthony Joshua on Saturday, igniting the start of a new phase of activity in the division.

Usyk first beat Joshua last September and handed the Briton another points loss with a decisive performance at the weekend, even if one of the judges ruled surprisingly against him to make it a split decision verdict.

The heavyweight division can now open up for an array of further exciting fights. With Usyk retaining his IBF, WBA and WBO titles against Joshua, matching him with Tyson Fury, the WBC belt-holder, for the undisputed heavyweight championship is the obvious next big fight.

Joshua still has options, with a showdown against America’s Deontay Wilder, a destructive puncher too, richly appealing even in a non-title bout. Wilder, of course, backs himself against the former champion. He also tips the Gypsy King to beat the Ukrainian.

The Ukrainian will expects to face the Gypsy King in December with one to become the first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis in 1999.

He said: “I think Fury will be too big for him. He just likes to use his size and a lot of other things. I think Usyk’s too small. I think Usyk has a stamina problem as well. If Joshua had enough stamina it would probably be a different result. But that’s my opinion about it.

“I’d fight them all,” Wilder added. “I’m back by popular demand. The future’s bright. The king is back.”

Joshua needs to fight either Daniel Dubois or Joe Joyce for a shot at Fury in the future, according to Fury’s promoter Frank Warren who also manages the pair.

It is the third loss on AJ’s record now, but he immediately signalled his intention to get back to work and be heavyweight champion of the world for a third time.

He may not be fighting for any belts the next time he steps into a ring, but there are plenty of enticing bouts to make.

Joyce takes on Joseph Parker next month. They are the top two contenders in the WBO rankings, and the winner will likely become a mandatory challenger down the line.

Dubois lost to Joyce in 2020, but is still only 24 and has a 17-1 record, winning his last three fights with quick knockouts.


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