Oleksandr Usyk has retained his world heavyweight boxing titles after defeating Anthony Joshua on points in Saudi Arabia.
Joshua puts in an improved performance from their first bout at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last September but Usyk still proved to be too much for him across the 12 rounds, retaining his IBF, WBO, and WBA (Super) heavyweight belts, as well as picking up the Ring magazine title vacated by Tyson Fury, with a split-decision victory.
One judge scored the fight 115-113 in AJ’s favour, but the second had the same score to Usyk with the third making it 116-112 to the world champion.
Joshua came out of the blocks with more intensity than 11 months ago, with neither man backing down in a thrilling rematch.
The Ukrainian will now attempt to coax Fury out of retirement for a lucrative showdown to become the first undisputed champion of boxing’s blue-riband division since the great Lennox Lewis.