Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk fight results: Live updates, start time, fight card, DAZN boxing, and PPV info
Hello and welcome to our live coverage of Anthony Joshua’s fight against Oleksandr Usyk at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, for the unified WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO heavyweight world titles.
It promises to be a thrilling fight and 67,000 fans are expected in north London this evening, the highest British boxing attendance since Joshua defended his titles against Alexander Povetkin at Wembley in September 2018.
Joshua, 31, hopes to become the undisputed heavyweight world champion by beating Tyson Fury and adding the WBC title to his collection of belts. But defeat would wreck those hopes and tonight he comes up against a formidable champion who has never been beaten — or even knocked down — during the course of his professional career.
Stick with us as we bring you all the latest news and big fight build-up, before round-by-round coverage of the fight itself. And to read our full preview of one of the biggest fights of the year, click here.
Also, get in touch to share your thoughts on tonight’s fight! Email me at lbrown[at]theathletic.com and I’ll include them in the blog.
Saturday’s fight card and estimated fight times:
Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk (10.30pm)
What a performance
Oleksandr Usyk has now won world titles at both heavyweight and cruiserweight.
Joshua has returned to his dressing room.
Oleksandr Usyk defeats Anthony Joshua via a majority decision.
What a performance
We surely have a new heavyweight champion of the world.
ROUND TWELVE: Joshua vs Usyk
Joshua needs to attack but Usyk leaves him no time. The challenger bounds forward and begins to throw. Joshua bites down on his gumshield and throws an overhand right, which lands. But Usyk absorbs the blow and darts back out of range.
Joshua is trying to press forward but Usyk is throwing back. This fight has been a chess match. This round has been a dogfight. Usyk is throwing, and landing, the heavier shots. Joshua looks dazed. His eyes are wide and he is unsteady on his feet.
Joshua has one minute to knock Usyk out but he is eating increasingly heavy shots. The second tick down on Joshua’s reign as unified heavyweight champion of the world. Still, Usyk presses forward. He lands with multiple shots. Joshua’s legs have gone. He leans back onto the ropes. He is ready to be finished. But Usyk cannot find the shot. The bell goes.
ROUND ELEVEN: Joshua vs Usyk
Usyk sprints out of the traps! He fancies this. He knows he’s deep behind enemy lines and he knows he needs to win these next two rounds. Joshua looks tired. He’s been boxing all night. Now he needs to plant his feet and fight.
Joshua needs something truly special here. He throws a clubbing right hand. It’s a good shot but he needs to throw more!
Usyk steps it up. He throws a left and steps in. He throws another and steps in. He forces Joshua all the way back across the ring. He’s in control. Joshua knows he needs to step in but Usyk is never there to be hit.
The round finishes with Usyk landing another big left hand.
Joshua needs to knock Usyk out. Joshua is not ahead and it would be a disgrace were any of the cards to be in his favour.
By my count Joshua needs to win the next three rounds or knock Usyk out.
That said, Usyk is attempting to turn up the pressure. He doesn’t want to cede any momentum. Joshua looks heavy, ponderous. He needs to risk it. He needs to make his weight and power count. Because he is not winning this fight.
Joshua gamely battles on. He lands a right hand. Usyk continues to dance around. One minute of the round left.
But has a cut opened above the eye of Usyk? It looks like it. It’s nasty and the sight of it may well encourage Joshua to press on. But it also encourages Usyk to fight fire with fire. He begins to throw wildly and, in the melee, Joshua is caught. His right eye looks as though it is closing up, there’s a lot of swelling.
Both men are hurt. I don’t think Joshua won that round, but it was close. It could have gone either way.
A barrage from Usyk to begin the round. Joshua is on the defensive again. Usyk presses forward and Joshua tries to rough him up, but the referee is quick to split the two.
How is Usyk still this light on his feet nine rounds into a heavyweight world title fight? Answers on a postcard please. He continues to enjoy success with his jab. Joshua again tries to wrap him up.
Joshua needs to let his hands go, he is losing this round, and he presses forward, looking to back Usyk up. And now it’s Usyk’s turn to wrap his opponent up! But he’s fine, and the bell goes soon after. Another Usyk round. I have him three up.
Usyk is daring forward again. He’s been buoyed by that seventh round. Joshua sensibly keeps his hands up and absorbs a couple of decent shots to the body. Joshua then looks to land a lead right hand, but falls short. As does Usyk with one of those looping left hands.
Good right hand from Joshua. Which he follows up with a good hook to the body. He’s letting his hands go. He has to. Usyk fights fire with fire and replies with a pair of big hooks. Both miss.
Before the round ends Joshua sneaks in a couple of big shots to the body. Usyk walks back to his corner breathing much heavier than three minutes ago. It’s impossible to take your eyes off this.
The crowd want Joshua to start this round at pace and he obliges. He throws another stiff job and follows it with a right hand. That’s woken Usyk up, he retorts with a decent right hand of his own, and then an overhand left.
Another good left hand from Usyk. And then a powerful shot to the body from Joshua. He’s beginning to plant his feet. But then Usyk retorts with a left hook which forces Joshua to take a couple of steps backwards!
The challenger presses on! He’s beginning to throw some big shots of his own and throws a dangerous looping left hook. He connects … and Joshua is staggered once again! Joshua’s feet cannot help but press forward but he is starting to eat shots and Usyk ends the round on top, having wrested back the momentum.
There is almost some bad blood on the bell, as Joshua feints to whallop Usyk after the end of the round. But Usyk ducks and smirks. He knows he had the better of that round.
Joshua lands a jab. Good shot. Is Usyk perhaps beginning to feel the pace of this contest? He is beginning to throw a few more shots, and take a few less steps around the ring.
Joshua has a huge reach advantage and it’s more noticeable in this round. He is working his jab, sizing Usyk up. That’s essential if he is finally to land one of his most malignant shots.
The champion is holding the centre ring. Can he pin the challenger? He’s making Usyk work and he’s still throwing out that jab, spitting it out like a serpent’s tongue.
The crowd urge their man on. They are encouraged by a right hand that Usyk feels. Joshua then lands a short, sharp check hook. This is much, much better. It’s Joshua’s best round and, for the first time this fight, it feels as though there is some momentum behind him.
Usyk lands another smart punch to Joshua’s chin. This is what he does. He chips away and chips away. Joshua needs to do something as, at the moment, Usyk has it all his own way.
Better! Usyk is caught on the balls of his feet for perhaps the first time in this fight and Joshua is a whisker away from landing a powerful hook. But the challenger presses on and lands a decent shot to Joshua’s body. He said that was his tactic before the fight.
And now Joshua goes to the body. The crowd loves that, they haven’t had an awful lot to cheer. And then a solid right hand! Usyk smiles. Of course he does. Usyk battles back by ramming a stiff jab into Joshua’s face. Joshua beckons him forward, and this is better, but Usyk is as likely to stand and trade in the pocket as I am to win the EuroMillions lottery tonight.
Dramatic start to the round as Joshua staggers back! The referee rules it as a slip. But Joshua looks dazed. He’s still feeling the effects of the left that Usyk landed in the third.
Joshua has to settle back into this. But Usyk is suffocating. He lands a short hook on Joshua’s chin. Joshua eats it, but he’s not going to be able to eat too many more.
Joshua continues to pump out his left jab. He lands one. But Usyk darts out of range as he looks to follow it up with more. The champion looks flat footed, there isn’t much rhythm at the moment. He is marching to the beat of Usyk’s drum.
The crowd try to roar Joshua back into the fight. It’s another close round.
Joshua looks to press forward. I typed it literally 120 seconds ago so forgive me for the repetition: but my god, Usyk’s footwork! Before Joshua has even thought about launching an attack, Usyk has already jabbed and circled away from it. Sensationally good.
A bit of frustration from Joshua? He throws a clubbing hook but Usyk has already come in and got out. You’re not landing with those sort of shots. Not against this man.
Joshua is beginning to realise the contest he has on his hands here. There’s more head movement. That’s encouraging. He needs to throw some shots, too. “Plant your feet!” somebody from the expensive seats urges.
WOW! Both men land big shots.
But, before the bell, Joshua replies with a big right which staggers Usyk!
Usyk gets to work with his jab. There’s more upper body from Joshua, now he needs to let his hands go. Usyk hasn’t stopped moving and his right hand is constantly at work, deflecting Joshua’s jab. “CONTROL THE DISTANCE!” McCracken shouts from his corner.
Usyk’s footwork is just so sublime. He glides. He’s also throwing body shots when the opportunities present themselves. He must have learned that from Ruiz.
Joshua still looks a little bit dumbfounded. This is an entirely new test. Usyk is world class. Joshua is boxing him and Usyk is a better boxer. Then he lands a stinging right hook that Usyk only partially deflects. Better.
But Usyk is in control. What a fight this is.
Joshua races to the middle of the ring. Usyk is light on his feet. Bouncing on his toes. Twitching, feinting, faking. He looks so quick. Joshua has his hands up and is sizing up the distance.
It’s a similar opening round to Usyk’s win over Chisora. Joshua is looking to flick out his jab to size up the distance. But Usyk is beating away his opponent’s fist, like a cat. He doesn’t want Joshua knowing where he’s going to be. He doesn’t want Joshua finding his range.
Joshua looks to jab the body. That leaves an opening and Usyk exploits it by landing with a short, sharp shot to the head. It’s close, it’s captivating. Joshua can’t settle because Usyk is dancing around the ring, attacking from every angle. It’s dizzying to watch, imagine being in the ring!
Joshua looks a little static, in my humble opinion. He needs to move his head. He can’t afford to sit on the back of his feet and let Usyk dance.
The round ends. Usyk nicks it. But both men were on scouting missions.
… enough with all the silliness. The next update you read will be a recap of the first round.
SECONDS OUT. ROUND ONE.
Joshua and Usyk are staring each other out from across the ring. It’s intense. This is going to be one hell of a chess match.
It’s almost time
I’m excited. Are you excited? Let’s do this.
Joshua is in the ring
Now it’s Joshua’s turn. A VT on the big screen shows all of his knockouts to date. The Klitschko uppercut will always be the best, won’t it?
He’s wearing his now customary white gown, inspired by The Greatest. And it’s a slowwwwww walk to the ring. He’s waving and pointing to every single fan in the house. And he’s surrounded by his team, who proudly hold his collection of world title belts. Even the IBO. I would have left that at home, personally.
He looks so relaxed, laughing, and he ambles up to the plinth that he always stands on before a big fight. He rises up into the cool north London air and the fireworks go off around him. The crowd are loving it, which is great, because those tickets weren’t cheap!
(A better blogger than me would also tell you each of the songs that make up his walkout medley, but to be totally honest, I’ve not got a clue.)
He kisses a granny in the crowd (GENUINELY) and, finally, he’s in the ring.
Usyk is in the ring
He strides to the ring in a white sleeveless top with the hood up. He’s wearing a mask that looks a bit like something Elon Musk would give his SpaceX buddies. Which is a shame, frankly, as I always enjoy how mad Usyk’s eyes look before a big fight.
It’s a quick walk! No messing about. And no interaction with the fans, which isn’t really a surprise, considering that just about everybody in attendance is loudly jeering him.
He enters the squared circle and kisses the Ukrainian flag. He lifts up his mask. He’s ready.