Oleksandr Usyk Reportedly Leaves Ukraine To Start Training Camp For Anthony Joshua Rematch
Unified heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk is preparing for his anticipated rematch with Anthony Joshua, according to a number of reports.
News broke earlier this week that promoter Bob Arum announced that Usyk and Vasiliy Lomachenko were permitted by the Ukrainian government to leave the war-torn country and train for their respective fights. But Boxing Scene reported later that Lomachenko will not take the opportunity to train for a George Kambosos Jr title fight he was a frontrunner for.
There were then conflicting reports on whether or not Usyk was going to take the chance to start training for his targeted summer rematch. But Usyk never needed permission in the first place under martial law, which states “all men 18 to 60 are forbidden from leaving the country unless they have at least three children or work in certain strategic sectors.”
Usyk has three children while Lomachenko has two.
There has been no official word from Usyk or his team that the heavyweight has made his decision, but multiple outlets have reported that this is the case.
A number of outlets have also reported that Usyk has crossed into neighboring country Poland to begin training, but BBC said his camp is not there.
Usyk was on the path to start prepping for his training camp until Russia invaded his home country Ukraine at the end of February. He was in London at the time of the invasion, but flew back and joined the Kyiv Territorial Defense Battalion.
Lomachenko later joined the Belgorod-Dnestrovsky Territorial Defense.
“I don’t want to shoot, I don’t want to kill anybody, but if they will be killing me, I will have no choice,” Usyk previously said.
“Maybe it will sound sentimental, but my soul belongs to the Lord, and my body belongs to my country, to my family. So there is no fear, absolutely no fear. There’s just bafflement; how could this be in the 21st century?”
April was initially the potential date for Usyk’s rematch with Joshua, but Joshua’s search for a new trainer, Tyson Fury’s team’s failed step-aside deal and the Russia-Ukraine war forced a delay.
Retired world heavyweight champions Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko also remain in Ukraine. Vitali is the current mayor of Kyiv.