Oleksandr Usyk Narrowly Wins Undisputed Heavyweight Title Over Tyson Fury

Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time since 2000, boxing has an undisputed heavyweight champion.

Oleksandr Usyk of Ukraine defeated Great Britain's Tyson Fury on Saturday evening in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia by split decision to become the first undisputed heavyweight champion since Hall of Famer Lennox Lewis.

The margin could not have been closer: Usyk won 114-113 and 115-112 on two judges' scorecards and lost 114-113 on the other's. Each judge scored the ninth round 10-8 to Usyk; every other round was scored 10-9 on every card.

Usyk knocked down Fury in the ninth round and held serve to deal the Brit the first loss of his professional career.

The two fighters are likely to lock horns again, as their contract contains a rematch clause. Immediately after the fight, Fury suggested he won and that Usyk gained sympathy from the judges due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

"I believe I won that fight," Fury said. "I believe he won a few of the rounds, but I won the majority of them. We both put on a good fight. His country is at war, so people are siding with the country at war."


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Patrick Andres

PATRICK ANDRES

Patrick Andres has been a Staff Writer on the Breaking & Trending News Team at Sports Illustrated since 2022. Before SI, his work appeared in The Blade, Athlon Sports, Fear the Sword, and Diamond Digest. Patrick has covered everything from zero-attendance Big Ten basketball to a seven-overtime college football game. He is a graduate of Northwestern University.