Fear of new Heavyweight boxing sensation Anthony Joshua may have forced Ukraine’s former heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko to announce his retirement from boxing on Thursday.
Klitschko hanged his gloves after a nine-and-a-half year reign as heavyweight champion.
The 41-year-old’s last fight was in April when he was brutalised and stopped by Nigerian bron Joshua in the 11th round of the WBA title fight at Wembley Stadium in London.
“I have achieved everything I dreamed of, and now I want to start my second career after sports,” Klitschko said.
His retirement helps him to dodge a planned mega rematch with Joshua possibly in Las Vegas in November. The Joshua camp had only on Tuesday given Klitschko to accept a rematch.
The ukranian won super-heavyweight gold at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games and had held the unified title from 2006-2015 before losing to Tyson Fury in 2015.
Klitschko retires with an impressive record of 64 wins and five defeats.
Hard puncher, Joshua had given Klitschko the beating of his professional life at the Wembley fight and it seems he is not ready to take another pummelling.
Klitschko’s retirement has dashed hope of a rematch with Joshua, which would have been staged in Las Vegas in November.