Oleksandr Usyk: Amateur record and career | Pro stats & factsWritten by Leroy Cleveland
Is he the world’s best cruiserweight?
Don’t let his professional record (12-0) fool you, the WBO Cruiserweight champion is the real deal.
On September 9, Oleksandr Usyk will face the biggest name in the division over the last 6 years - Marco Huck (45-4, 27 KO) who is the second longest reigning cruiserweight world champion of all time, having held the WBO title from 2009 to 2015, making thirteen consecutive successful defenses. And despite the fact Huck has 4x as much professional experience, Usyk is still a solid favorite.
Not only has Usyk looked great as a pro and defeated stellar opponents such as Krzysztof Głowacki (then 26-0, 16 KOs), his amateur pedigree is deep.
Oleksandr Usyk: Amateur record and career
Usyk’s amateur record, per RingTV, is 335-15. And let’s not forget, he was a Gold Medal winner at the 2012 Olympic Games representing Ukraine.
Amateur career highlights
- Started boxing at 15
- Participated in the 2006 European Championships
- Won the Strandja Cup in 2008.
- He dropped down to light-heavy and captured the European Championships 2008 but later went up again.
- Competed as a heavyweight at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing but didn't medal
- Defeated Artur Beterbiev twice
- Won Gold Medal at the 2012 Olympics Games in London
“I’m sure that Oleksandr has huge charisma and great boxing skills to make Ukrainian people and boxing fans all over the world enjoy his fights for a long time,” the former heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko said in a prepared statement via RingTV.
“His fervour, energy and purposefulness will definitely bring him to the top of the world in pro boxing.”
Why did Usyk start boxing?
He insists he didn't have the money to play soccer.
“Before my first visit to a boxing gym I played soccer and was good in that sport,” he commented. “But soccer equipment was too expensive in my country so my family wasn’t rich enough to continue to support me playing soccer.”
“I decided to go into boxing gym soon ’cause you don’t need too expensive equipment for being a boxer,” said Usyk via RingTV..
But like many boxers, Oleksandr's first fights didn't take place in a ring.
“... I previously knew that I definitely can fight because of many winning street fights which I was involved in during my boyhood.
Last fall, Usyk claimed the WBO title by beating then-undefeated Polish boxer Krzysztof Głowacki (26-0, 16 KOs) in an exciting bout that was aired live on Sky Sports in the UK. Usyk won by the scores 119-109 117-111 117-111.
Is Summer 2016, Oleksandr Usyk agreed to participate in a 8-man bracket style cruiserweight tournament, due to start in September 2017. The winner of the tournament will be crowned 'King of the Cruiserweights,' and will receive a grand money prize and the Muhammad Ali trophy.
However, given the cruiserweight division is like the boxing's red-headed bucktoothed step-child, Usyk, regardless of the tournament's outcome, might have to move up to heavyweight to become a star. And given his pedigree, athleticism and height, he shouldn't be counted out.
Professional Facts & Stats (as of 8/30/17)
Pro record: 12-0, 10 KO
Major titles: WBO cruiserweight title
Age: 30 (01-17-1987)
Hometown: Simferopol, Ukraine
Weight class: Cruiserweight
Height / reach: 6-3 (190 cm)/ 75 inches (193 cm)
Amateur record: 335-15
Pro Debut: 2013
Trainer(s): James Bashir, Sergey Vatamanyuk (assistant)
Manager: Alexander Krassyuk
Promoter: K2 Promotions Ukraine