Oleksandr Usyk named Tony Bellew as his ‘toughest test’ when he mirrored on their combat.
Back in 2018, the undisputed cruiserweight champion travelled to the UK to defend his titles in opposition to the Brit who troubled him early on.
The combat started with a tentative opening from each males as the pair tried to seek out their vary.
In the second, Bellew started to shock onlookers by touchdown a number of, consecutive proper palms and even taunting his much-feared opponent.
The Scouser made it clear that he was not in awe of his foe and even switched to a southpaw stance midway by means of, earlier than persevering with his supremacy in the third.
However, issues started to show from the fourth spherical onwards, as the champion wobbled the house favorite with an enormous left hook – a prophetic punch that will come again to hang-out him once more in a while.
The fifth saw some extra consistency from Usyk as he appeared to have now solved the puzzle Bellew offered early on.
Usyk carried his dominance by means of the sixth and seventh as the challenger started to decelerate, taking an growing quantity of flush hooks in the method.
In the eigthth, it all got here crashing down for Bellew.
One big left hook put him on the canvas and gave referee Terry O’Connor no choice but to deliver an finish to the bout, and to Bellew’s fantastic career.
“I tried my best,” Bellew said post-fight. “I gave it everything I’ve got. He’s an exceptional fighter and he deserves all the awards in the world.
“Oleksandr Usyk is a great, great champion and I lost to one of the pound-for-pound best that’s ever done it.
“He’s fantastic, he beat me fair and square. I have no excuses.
“You come up against great people in life and sometimes you lose, you’ve just got to accept it.
“He’s the best I’ve ever fought. Anyone who faces him in a lot of trouble.
When asked to confirm his retirement, Bellew replied instantly: “It’s definitely the end for me.”