Boxing: Can Oleksandr Usyk overcome Joshua?

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The big question going into the fight between WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua against Oleksandr Usyk at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in Tottenham, London, on Saturday night, is, can the smaller Usyk overcome the weight and height advantages of the defending champion?

More than 60 000 spectators will be present the at the Spurs’ plush £1billion home

The 31-year-old Joshua from Watford, England, who has a record of 24-1; 22, is coming off an impressive win over Kubrat Pulev in December.

Usyk,34, from the Ukraine but fighting out of Oxnard, California, has a record 18-0; 13 and was the undisputed cruiserweight champion before deciding to move up to the heavyweight division.

He has won two low-profile fights against Chazz Witherspoon (rtd 7) and Dereck Chisora (pts 12).

In view of the weight and size differences, and with only two fights in the heavyweight class it is not surprising that the odds favour Josua.

Usyk, a 2012 Olympic gold medallist, will have to use all his boxing skills and footwork and take minimal risks to score points from awkward positions to come out on top. Joshua also won a gold medal at the same Olympics.

When it comes to pure boxing skills Joshua cannot win and he will have to use his power and size to pierce the guard of the southpaw Usyk.

Joshua, with a height of 198cm and reach of 208cm, has big advantages against the height of 191cm and reach of 198cm of Usyk.

On most of the betting sites Joshua is an overwhelming favourite with one having odds of minus 275 for Joshua and plus 200 for Usyk.

Earlier today on Friday Josua weighed in at 108,86kg (240lbs) and Usyk a surprising 100.36kg (221.25kg).

UNDERCARD

Lawrence Okolie (16-0; 13) defends his WBO cruiserweight belt against Dilan Prasovic (15-0; 12).

Source: Supersport


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