Former heavyweight world champion Wladimir Klitschko announced that he is retiring from boxing on Thursday. His retirement also means that he will not fight Anthony Joshua. Following their 11-round epic battle back in April at Wembley, the big rematch between the two fighters was scheduled for November 11, but that is obviously not going to happen now.
Klitschko issued a statement announcing his retirement:
“I deliberately took a few weeks to make my decision, to make sure I had enough distance from the fight at Wembley Stadium. As an amateur and a professional boxer, I have achieved everything I dreamed of, and now I want to start my second career after sports. I would have never imagined that I would have such a long and incredibly successful boxing career. I’m very thankful for this. Thanks to everyone who has always supported me, especially my family, my team and my many fans.”
Klitschko hangs up the gloves after 21 years and 69 professional contests where he had an outstanding record of 64-5. Klitschko’s professional career began in 1996 after winning gold at the Atlanta Olympic Games. The 41-year-old Ukrainian boxer won the WBO’s heavyweight title in 2003. During his most dominant times, Klitschko went 11 years without suffering a defeat and earned three of the four recognized world titles before his points loss to Tyson Fury in 2015.