Usyk dethrones Fury to become undisputed world heavyweight champion

Usyk dethrones Fury to become undisputed world heavyweight champion

Oleksandr Usyk has dethroned Tyson Fury and is the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world after a split decision victory in Saudi Arabia today.

Two judges gave the bout to Usyk 114-113 and 115-112 and the other gave it 114-113 to Fury.

Usyk is the first man in 25 years to hold the undisputed title. Englishman Lennox Lewis was the last man to hold it.

In a dramatic fight in Riyadh, Usyk controlled the first two rounds before Fury, with a big size and reach advantage, found his range and dominated the fight before Usyk regained his momentum.

The key round was the ninth, with Fury badly hurt by a flurry of Usyk punches, the referee giving the Englishman a standing eight count when he could have stopped the fight and handed Usyk a technical knockout victory.

Fury, saved by the bell, once again showed his powers of recovery to regain his senses and go the distance.

“I believe I won that fight,” Fury said afterwards. “I believe he won a few of the rounds but I won the majority of them.

“I’ll be back, I’ve got a rematch clause.”

The pair will likely fight again in October; the rematch clause was present no matter the winner. It will be a popular fight – both men showed heart, skill and power and contributed to a phenomenal occasion.

Ukrainian Usyk, the former undisputed cruiserweight world champion, was emotional when he heard the decision. He said: “Yes, I am ready for the rematch.”

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