Oleksandr Usyk, Vasiliy Lomachenko Given Opportunity To Leave Ukraine, Train For Upcoming Fights
Promoter Bob Arum revealed that Oleksandr Usyk and Vasiliy Lomachenko have been permitted to leave the Russia-Ukraine war to train for their title fights.
But it’s unclear if they’ve accepted yet.
“The Ukrainian government, which is tremendous, are co-operating with us as far as Lomachenko and also Usyk,” Arum, Lomachenko’s promoter, told Fanatics View.
“… Hopefully the war will then be over, but if it isn’t, [they will then] go back into defense mode. So I don’t know where that stands with either guys, whether they’re going to accept the offer of the cultural minister of Ukraine to leave and to train for fights.”
Usyk is up for a contractual rematch against former unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, who he defeated in September 2021 for all his belts. He flew back home from London to his country not too long after Russia’s invasion began in late February.
He joined the Kyiv Territorial Defense. It was rumored that Joshua may have to seek an interim fight while Usyk continues defending his country.
Lomachenko also flew back home after being in Greece. He later revealed that he had joined the Belgorod-Dnestrovsky Territorial Defense.
Prior to the invasion, Lomachenko was the front-runner for a title shot at unified lightweight champion George Kambosos Jr in June in Australia. But since his future is unclear as he defends his home country, news spread that Kambosos and his team may have to turn to WBC lightweight champion Devin Haney.
TalkSPORT reported that Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn revealed that the rematch between the heavyweights will likely happen.
“Is AJ vs Usyk happening now? I actually think it will. I actually think that fight will happen next and it will happen in June,” he said.