Oleksandr Usyk responds to Anthony Joshua apology ahead of seismic Tyson Fury fight - 'I respect'

Oleksandr Usyk responds to Anthony Joshua apology ahead of seismic Tyson Fury fight - 'I respect'

WATCH NOW: Oleksandr Usyk discusses Tyson Fury boxing fight

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 07/04/2024

- 12:47

The Ukrainian has opened up ahead of his return to the ring next month

Oleksandr Usyk has revealed he respects Anthony Joshua and didn't need an apology from the Briton ahead of his fight with Tyson Fury next month.

Back in August 2022, Usyk beat Joshua in Saudi Arabia - having previously got the better of the 34-year-old at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

After the fight, Joshua took some of Usyk's belts and threw them - sparking controversy in the process.

Speaking in February last year, the Watford-born star apologised for his actions by saying: "Listen, I'm not perfect.

Boxing news Oleksandr Usyk

Boxing news: Oleksandr Usyk has responded after he received an apology from Anthony Joshua


"It's not the right thing to have done. I didn't speak to Usyk but I spoke to Wladimir [Klitschko] and said give yourself a pat on the shoulder and tell him 'well done and I apologise', that's man-to-man.

"But it was just raw, it may not make sense to a lot of people but it made a lot of sense to me and it was just how much it means, to a degree.

"I thought I would feel like that at the end of my career and when it's all said and done I'd just be like 'wow, what a rollercoaster, I made it through the trenches'."

And Usyk, speaking to Seconds Out, has claimed he respects Joshua and didn't need an apology in the first place.

“I don’t have bad feelings about Joshua because I respect this man," he said.

"He’s a great man. He’s a great boxer, an Olympic champion, and two times world champion.

“I think it’s emotion. I respect this man. No, I'm good."

Usyk is confident he'll be able to beat Fury next month.

The duo will meet in the first heavyweight showdown since the days of Lennox Lewis.

Fury has been typically upbeat prior to their clash and has repeatedly insisted he'll reign supreme.

Yet Usyk fancies his chances and says he's already targeting a future fight in Ukraine.

"Not if, when?," he said when asked about returning to his homeland if he beats Fury twice.

“I want to do a fight in Ukraine at the big stadium, Olimsky.

"My goal is to make a fight in a stadium. I think I [will] do it."

Usyk was also asked about the upcoming fight between Jake Paul and Mike Tyson.


Boxing news Usyk Joshua

Boxing news: Anthony Joshua was unhappy after losing to Oleksandr Usyk back in 2022


Eddie Hearn has blasted the pair for fighting, while Ricky Hatton has also admitted to concerns about the bout.

Tyson will be 58 by the time he goes up against 27-year-old Paul in July.

Yet Usyk insists criticism of the duo is over the top and that he himself doesn't have any problem with the fight.

“Listen, listen, it just shows, Tyson is a big, big famous man, who is well known around the world," he said.

"Yeah, Jake Paul is young guy who won at boxing who wants to help young guys but it’s a big show.

Boxing news Tyson Fury

Boxing news: Oleksandr Usyk is confident of beating Tyson Fury when they fight next month


"If people want to see the show, OK, give it to them. For me, I think it’s OK.”

Fury vs Usyk takes place in Riyadh on May 18.

The Gypsy King has won 34 of his 35 fights going into that contest, with Usyk winning all 21 of his own bouts so far.

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