As Russian forces continue to attack the city and their invasion of Ukraine enters its third week, Usyk and Klitschko are preparing for a different type of fight, one that is considerably more deadly.
Both won several world heavyweight boxing championships, known for smooth footwork and fierce jabs. One barely faced a knockdown in the ring. The other is undefeated for a decade.
Now, after Hall of Fame boxing careers, Vitali Klitschko and Oleksandr Usyk are again on the world stage, united in Ukraine’s fight against Russia’s invasion.
In the days since the assault began on their home country, both have said they plan to take up arms to defend against the Russian military as it moves closer to Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital.
On Friday, volunteer fighters patrolled the streets of Kyiv. President Volodymyr Zelensky urged Ukrainians to stand up and defend their country. The message came as Russian airstrikes began to bombard the capital city.
Instead of training for his biggest fight to date (against Anthony Joshua), Usyk is hunkered down in a Kyiv bomb shelter, having returned to his homeland from the United Kingdom to enlist in the Ukrainian capital’s territorial defense unit.
“What do you mean why?” Usyk asked, looking slightly baffled when asked Wednesday why he signed up by CNN. “It is my duty to fight, to defend my home, my family.”
They had many chances to flee the country, but they stayed, and that's a sign of a pure courage, a DEFIANCE!
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