Home Sports Oleksandr Usyk lost ten kilograms in a week when Russia invaded Ukraine,...

Oleksandr Usyk lost ten kilograms in a week when Russia invaded Ukraine, his wife says

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Boxing heavyweight world champion Oleksandr Usyk lost ten kilograms in just a week during Ukraine’s war against Russia, his wife has revealed, with his drastic shedded weight coming ahead of his blockbuster bout with Anthony Joshua.

Usyk bravely enlisted with the military in his homeland in late February to help them hold off the Russian forces after they launched their bloody invasion, and the situation in eastern Europe saw his fight against Joshua placed in jeopardy.

The duo were set to lock horns in the spring in a rematch of their showdown from last September, which saw Usyk down his opponent and, against the odds, strip away his titles in stunning fashion in London.

However, the Ukrainian superstar’s preparations for their second fight have been severely affected by the crisis in his country – and he has also admitted that his thoughts are often far away from focusing on his sport.

Last month, he was given clearance to leave Ukraine for his scrap with Joshua.

Since then, Usyk has largely remained silent over his time taking up arms, but his wife Yekaterina has opened up on how he was alarmingly affected. 

Speaking to PravadaTUT Lviv, she revealed that Usyk suffered weight loss as a result of the crisis, and described him as being ‘horrified’ and ‘in shock’.

‘Oleksandr lost 10 kilograms in a week of the war,’ she said. ‘He was so horrified, in such shock, he was so torn apart… He saw what I was doing. I said, “Sasha, please, people are asking, we must speak, somehow support.”

Oleksandr Usyk lost ten kilograms in just a week after the invasion of Ukraine, his wife revealed

Oleksandr Usyk lost ten kilograms in just a week after the invasion of Ukraine, his wife revealed

Ukrainian heavyweight Usyk dethroned Anthony Joshua last year but is set to face him again

Ukrainian heavyweight Usyk dethroned Anthony Joshua last year but is set to face him again

‘But it’s very difficult for him. But he still goes on the air, he says something. His position is clear. He has always been for Ukraine, he has always glorified it and will glorify it, as long as his health and strength last.’

In a rare interview after Vladimir Putin’s forces began their invasion, Usyk described boxing as ‘child’s play’ in comparison to the war and said he is struggling to focus about anything other than the fighting in his homeland. 

Speaking to YouTube channel Blockasset, he said: ‘Some of my friends are missing, and we do not know where they are now. Many of my relatives lost their homes, and lost their friends and loved ones.

‘Frankly speaking, all that is going on now is quite horrible in Ukraine. 

Yekaterina Usyk says her husband was'horrified' and'in shock' by the bloodshed in his country

Yekaterina Usyk says her husband was ‘horrified’ and ‘in shock’ by the bloodshed in his country

Usyk (second from right) enlisted with the military in his homeland to fight back Russia's forces

Usyk (second from right) enlisted with the military in his homeland to fight back Russia’s forces

‘Every day I pray for the soonest possible end to this horror. In comparison with this, boxing is child’s play.’

On his attempts to gear up for his rematch with Joshua, Usyk added: ‘Although it was not easy for me, but I took such a decision, so now I am here and I have already started preparation for the rematch with Anthony Joshua.

‘Now I want to concentrate as much as possible on my preparation.

‘Because at the moment I cannot stop thinking about the war, about my friends in Ukraine.

Holding a record of 19-0-0, Usyk is the WBA, WBO and IBF world heavyweight champion

Holding a record of 19-0-0, Usyk is the WBA, WBO and IBF world heavyweight champion

‘And I have to get rid of such thoughts as much as possible in order to be prepared well for the Anthony Joshua fight and be able to glorify again my God and my native land.’

Holding a formidable record of 19-0-0, with 13 KOs, Usyk is the current WBA, WBO and IBF world heavyweight champion.

His clash with Joshua could be pushed back by a month, according to reports, with the bout now likely to take place in July instead.

Dan Rafael has claimed that Eddie Hearn and Alexander Krassyuk, Usyk’s promoter, are targeting a July 23 date for the heavyweight fight. 

Fellow boxers Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko also joined the military effort after the invasion

Fellow boxers Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko also joined the military effort after the invasion

Residents look at destroyed Russian tanks outskirts of Buzova village, west of Kyiv, on Sunday

Residents look at destroyed Russian tanks outskirts of Buzova village, west of Kyiv, on Sunday

Sportsmail understands, though, that this is just one of numerous dates being looked at, with the potential locations being discussed available at different times.

On the ground in Ukraine, fellow boxer and close friend Vasyl Lomachenko has also joined his country’s war effort, as well as Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko. 

Putin’s invasion has suffered another devastating blow, meanwhile, after his force’s death toll rose to 19,500, according to Kyiv estimates.

Russia has admitted 1,351 of its troops have died in the bloodshed since the invasion began on February 24, a fraction of the figure estimated by Ukraine’s armed forces.



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