Usyk is the new Unified WBO Heavyweight Champion; dethrone Anthony Joshua via unanimous decision

Oleksandr Usyk did exactly what he said he would do: follow an undisputed cruiserweight title success by becoming the unified heavyweight champion of the world by putting on a fantastic performance to dethrone Anthony Joshua via unanimous decision (117-111, 116-112, 115-113) to capture the Unified WBO heavyweight title.

Both men felt the effects of their grueling 12-round duel with damaged right eyes apiece, but the timing of Usyk — both in his punches and when he switched from patience to aggression — were second-to-none and left most of Joshua’s key fighting strengths out of the situation entirely.

Joshua had done enough in isolation to keep it close and competitive but never really left first gear before Usyk’s excellent conclusion in the last two rounds sealed it beyond debate.

The result likely scuppers the previous plan of a four-belt unification between Joshua and Tyson Fury — which was the plan for the summer until Deontay Wilder successfully forced a trilogy bout with the current WBC champ. There was a rematch clause in the contract. Joshua promoter Eddie Hearn told DAZN during the post-fight show that Joshua would invoke it.

Lawrence Okolie vs Dilan Prasovic, WBO Cruiserweight Title, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London.
25 September 2021
Picture By EDDIE KEOGH Matchroom Boxing
Victorious Lawrence Okolie with his belt.

In the chief support, Lawrence Okolie made a comfortable first defense of his WBO junior heavyweight title when he overwhelmed mandatory challenger Dilan Prasovic, scoring a knockdown in the second round before a body shot in the third prompted the official to wave it off.