Boxing News - Latest Headlines

Oleksandr Usyk Interview: Usyk Talks Fury & Why Joshua called president Zelenskyy

Image: Oleksandr Usyk Interview: Usyk Talks Fury & Why Joshua called president Zelenskyy

It’s now been over five months since that titantic second bout between Anthony Joshua & Oleksandr Usyk, which saw the Ukrainian retain his WBA, IBF, WBO, IBO and The Ring heavyweight titles. Parimatch sat down with their boxing ambassador, Oleksandr Usyk, to disuss the prospect of fighting Tyson Fury to become the undispted Heavyweight World Champion.

Usyk discusses his pending unification bout with Tyson Fury, trash talk & boxing British fighters

Usyk: I feel good, thank God! It’s my training camp, I’m preparing for my next fight against Tyson Fury. Promoters are having negotiations, managers are talking about the fight… I think a lot depends on one person in particular, Tyson Fury.

Parimatch: What is your training regime for the fight with Fury?

Usyk: For example, yesterday we ran in the pool with a treadmill inside. You stand on a platform, it then lowers you down into the water and the treadmill starts working there. And you run there in the water. So yesterday we ran with another big guy, his secret nickname is BigDi, big Dima, we ran ten kilometers in the water with him and I want to say that it was damn hard!

My legs still hurt to this day. Last night I felt so good that I threw my legs up to the ceiling. And this morning when we went to church, we go there on Sundays, and when we were standing, I started to feel pain in my back & legs. But my legs today, if you compare them with some human emotions, they are like Whoo-hoo! That’s what they did!

Image: Oleksandr Usyk Interview: Usyk Talks Fury & Why Joshua called president Zelenskyy

Parimatch: The British are one of Ukraine’s biggest allies, but you have to beat them in the ring. How do you like this foreign policy?

Usyk: This is boxing! It’s not like I beat him up, humiliated him, or something. This is boxing, we go into the ring, he hits me and I will try to hit him, it’s part of the job. For example, I know that Anthony Joshua called Volodymyr (Zelenskiy) and asked him how he could be useful to Ukraine or help and I have double respect for him for that. So that’s where it comes in: boxing and helping.

Parimatch: Is trash talk an essential part of modern boxing?

Usyk: I wouldn’t say that there is a lot of trash talk. In my opinion, trash talk is dirty stuff when you humiliate your opponent and call him or her somehow offensive. For example, in my case, when I call Tyson Fury “Belly”, it seems to me to be a little bit cute. A belly, What’s so offensive about it? Especially since he has one! He, in his turn, speaks to me a little harsher. But it doesn’t humiliate me in any way. He keeps talking and talking, let him talk to himself.

It has become popular where people want to be famous or show up. But first, you have to prove yourself as a good specialist, and then you can add some light trash talk, if you can, or not at all. But when you start with trash talk and enter the ring and fail, it’s a disadvantage.

Parimatch: What is the most insulting thing you’ve heard about yourself from an opponent?

Usyk: I have never had an opponent say something to me and I was offended by it. I believe that when a person is offended by something, it is poverty of the mind. And I think that’s why people get offended. You can draw some conclusions from what is said or something else.

But I think there is no need to be offended, because resentment is weakness. You become weak first of all because you think about it: “Oh, I’ve been offended! Oh, my God, what’s going on!” I treat this with humility and in my prayers, I say to the Lord, “Thank You for giving me such a test.” Because the Lord does not give a person a test unless He gives him strength first.

Parimatch: Is being intelligent about your opponent a part of your image, or an internal conviction?

Usyk: This guy going into the ring risks his life, his career & his health and I respect every boxer who goes into the ring. It makes no difference whether it’s my opponent or some other guy in a different weight class.

Respect, first of all, goes to a person if you respect yourself. If you develop yourself every day, if you try to be better every day, better in sports, in life, in family, and friendship. Step by step, you polish yourself to become a better version of yourself. If you respect yourself, you will respect those around you and your opponents.

Parimatch: Would you like to see Denys Berinchyk on your undercard?

Usyk. No way! I don’t want a madman boxing on my undercard. I’m just kidding. It all depends on Oleksandr Krasiuk, he is the promoter and he will make the arrangements. I’m in favour of having as many Ukrainians as possible on my undercard, but it’s all the promoter’s job.

Parimatch: How do you assess his chances for a title fight?

Usyk: It all depends on him and who enters the ring. If a person behaves well in the off-season, I mean constant training, not as intense as they go in training camp, but if you behave well in off-season, then everyone has a chance.

Usyk reveals his love for the Premier League, being back out on the pitch for Polissia and Mykhailo Mudryk’s Chelsea transfer

Parimatch: Will we see Oleksandr Usyk on the football pitch this off-season?

Usyk: We are communicating with my team about this, but the team and coaching staff are not very happy about it because the upcoming fight is serious and the risks are not justified. We need to be focused and prepare for our match. But there is a desire, so Polissia will have more games perhaps.

Parimatch: Is 100 million paid for Mykhailo Mudryk too little or too much? Did the price shock you?

Usyk: No, it doesn’t. Everything has risen. Prices, and money, are a little higher than they were. I think he’s worth a little more than 100 million because I’ve been watching this guy. I saw him for the first time playing for the U-18 or U-19 team. The hairstyle that catches your eye, the tattoos, I mean, he was playing, and I was watching him, and I liked him. It seems to me that this guy can bring the fourth Ballon d’Or to Ukraine.

Parimatch: When you have free time, do you watch boxing or football?

Usyk: I don’t like to watch boxing at all. Unless it’s my boxing, I mean the opponents I need to watch, because I study my opponent. I watch some boxing on purpose, because I like it, yes. But I prefer watching football on TV or just live. I watch football more than boxing.

Parimatch: What football league would you like to try yourself in?

Usyk: England. I like it, it’s tougher. There’s fewer boys fall rolling and screaming “ouch!” I mean, they go toe to toe, the bone sticks out and they keep running. I like this kind of football better.

Usyk provides details into his own foundation and his work with UNITED24

Parimatch: What are the achievements of the Usyk Foundation? Do you personally monitor the implementation of charity projects?

Usyk: There is a great team that works on this project. We help the military with cars, some equipment, and clothes. We also help ordinary people who need some basics like clothes, food, and housing – we work in the areas where we can help, we do a lot of things. A great team is working on this and they help me a lot. I wouldn’t have done anything as an independent unit, but the people who help me with this, I give them a lot of respect.

Parimatch: UNITED24, tell us how you became an ambassador of this fundraising platform.

Usyk: We talked to Andriy Shevchenko about this. When I was in the USA we hosted a charity dinner, raising funds to help Ukrainians. I met one of the UNITED24 ambassadors there, Liev Schreiber, and we had a great conversation, it felt like we had known each other for 10 years.

We met at a Ukrainian cafe called Veselka in New York, ate borscht, had tea, and just talked about how we could help. He asked me something about boxing and we had a nice conversation. Then someone from the UNITED24 team called me and offered me the chance to become an ambassador, I said: “Yes, I’m up for it!” I will take on all projects that will help Ukraine and Ukrainians, then we agreed to talk to Volodymyr Oleksandrovych (Zelenskiy) via video conference where I gave my consent to cooperate, and here I am as a UNITED24 ambassador.

And then we were in Kyiv where three ambassadors, me, Andriy Mykolayovych, and Scott Kelly, the astronaut, met. And we were at Volodymyr Oleksandrovych’s office, and three or four ambassadors joined via Zoom, we talked about how we could be useful in helping Ukraine.

Related Boxing News:

Boxing News FB Boxing News Twitter Boxing News INstagram Boxing News 24 Youtuber Mail

Privacy Statement l TOS & Cookies Policy l Back To Top l Contact Us