Klitschko in 2010
|Native name||Володи́мир Кличко́|
25 March 1976 |
Semipalatinsk (now Semey), Kazakh SSR, Soviet Union (now Kazakhstan)
|Height||1.98 m (6 ft 6 in)|
|Reach||206 cm (81 in)|
|Wins by KO||53|
Wladimir Wladimirowitsch Klitschko (Ukrainian: Володи́мир Володи́мирович Кличко́, tr. Volodymyr Volodymyrovych Klychko; born 25 March 1976) is a Ukrainian professional boxer. He is a two-time former world heavyweight champion, having held the WBA (Super), IBF and WBO titles, as well as the IBO, Ring magazine, and lineal titles. A strategic and cerebral boxer, Klitschko is considered to be one of the greatest heavyweight champions of all time, as well as among the hardest punching knockout artists in the history of the division; his strong jab, straight right hand and left hook being his most formidable weapons.
As an amateur, Klitschko represented Ukraine at the 1996 Olympics, winning a gold medal in the super-heavyweight division. After turning professional later that year, he defeated Chris Byrd in 2000 to win the WBO heavyweight title. Klitschko's first reign as champion ended in an upset knockout loss to Corrie Sanders in 2003, which was followed by another knockout loss to Lamon Brewster in 2004. It was during this time that Klitschko hired Emanuel Steward as his trainer, which began an eight-year partnership that lasted until Steward's death in 2012. In particular, Steward was credited with Klitschko's transition from an aggressive puncher to a more defensively-oriented boxer, much as he had done with Lennox Lewis in 1995 to 2003.
In 2006, Klitschko regained a portion of the world heavyweight championship after stopping Chris Byrd in a rematch to win the IBF and IBO titles. He won the WBO title for a second time by defeating then-unbeaten champion Sultan Ibragimov in 2008. Following his defeat of Ruslan Chagaev in 2009, Klitschko was awarded the Ring and lineal titles, and lastly he won the WBA title from David Haye in 2011. Until his defeat by Tyson Fury in 2015, Klitschko was also recognized as champion by the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, while the WBA recognized him as one of its "Super champions", a distinction given to boxers who hold that title in addition to those by other sanctioning bodies in the same division.
Overall, he became the second-longest reigning heavyweight champion of all time, and has the second-most successful title defenses total of any heavyweight boxer with 23 (including his initial reign as WBO champion), behind Joe Louis (25) and ahead of Larry Holmes (20) and Muhammad Ali (19). On 14 September 2015, BoxRec rated Klitschko as the number one fighter in the world, pound for pound. On 15 November 2014, he reached a career peak of number two on The Ring's pound for pound list. Klitschko has fought in 29 heavyweight title fights, more than any heavyweight champion in the sport's history. He also holds the record of having defeated the most boxers with an undefeated record, at 12, and has also defeated ten current or former world champions throughout his career.
Wladimir's older brother, Vitali Klitschko, is also a former WBC, WBO, and The Ring heavyweight champion. From 2006 until 2015, Wladimir and Vitali dominated heavyweight boxing, a period typically known as the "Klitschko Era" of the division.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Amateur career
- 3 Professional career
- 3.1 Early career
- 3.2 Klitschko vs. Byrd; five title defenses
- 3.3 Klitschko vs. Sanders, Brewster
- 3.4 Klitschko vs. Williamson, Castillo, Peter
- 3.5 Klitschko vs. Byrd II, Brock, Austin
- 3.6 Klitschko vs. Brewster II, Ibragimov, Thompson
- 3.7 Klitschko vs. Rahman, Chagaev, Chambers
- 3.8 Klitschko vs. Peter II
- 3.9 Klitschko vs. Haye
- 3.10 Klitschko vs. Mormeck, Thompson II, Wach
- 3.11 Klitschko vs. Pianeta, Povetkin, Leapai
- 3.12 Klitschko vs. Pulev, Jennings
- 3.13 Klitschko vs. Fury
- 3.14 Klitschko vs. Joshua
- 4 Other interests
- 5 Personal life
- 6 Professional boxing record
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Klitschko was born in Semipalatinsk (now Semey), Kazakh SSR, Soviet Union (now Kazakhstan). His father, Vladimir Rodionovich Klichko (1947–2011), was a Soviet Air Force major general and a military attaché of Ukraine in Germany; he was also one of the commanders in charge of cleaning up the effects of the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 and was afterward diagnosed with cancer. Wladimir's mother is Nadezhda Ulyanovna. He is the younger brother of former WBC, WBO and Ring magazine heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko, the current Mayor of Kiev.
In the early 1990s, Klitschko was coached in Poland's Gwardia Warszawa boxing club, where, according to Jerzy Kulej, "He and his brother used to demolish our boys." In 1993, he won the Junior European Championships as a heavyweight. In 1994, he received 2nd place at the Junior World Championships in Istanbul, Turkey, losing to Cuban Michel Lopez in the finals. In 1995, he won the gold medal at the Military Championships in Ariccia, Italy, defeating Luan Krasniqi, who he had lost to in the third round of the World Championships in Berlin, Germany earlier that year. In 1996, he captured 2nd place as a Super Heavyweight at the European Championships in Vejle, Denmark losing to Alexei Lezin in the finals. He defeated Lezin later that year in the semi finals at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. He had an amateur record of 134–6.
Known as "Dr. Steelhammer", he first achieved world attention at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. He defeated Paea Wolfgramm to win the Super-Heavyweight gold medal. He is announced as "Dr. Steelhammer", a nickname similar to his brother, Vitali, who goes by "Dr. Ironfist." Both brothers hold PhDs.
Klitschko turned professional with Universum Box-Promotion in Hamburg under the tutelage of Fritz Sdunek, often being featured on fight cards alongside his elder brother Vitali. After building an undefeated record of 24–0 with 22 KOs, he suffered his first loss to 24–13–1 Ross Puritty, in what was Klitschko's first and only professional fight in Ukraine. Klitschko's coach, Fritz Sdunek, stopped the fight. On 18 March 2000, Klitschko fought Paea Wolfgramm, whom he fought previously in the 1996 Super Heavyweight Olympic Finals. In their professional rematch, Klitschko knocked Wolfgramm out in the first round.
Klitschko vs. Byrd; five title defenses
On 14 October 2000, in Cologne, Germany's Kölnarena, Klitschko won the WBO Heavyweight Championship from American Chris Byrd by a wide unanimous decision by scores of: 120–106, 119–107, and 118–108, flooring his opponent twice. Byrd had previously upset his elder brother Vitali (who pulled out injured during their bout).
Klitschko registered five successful title defenses, all by TKO over: Derrick Jefferson, Charles Shufford, former IBF champion Frans Botha, former WBO champion Ray Mercer and Jameel McCline.
Klitschko vs. Sanders, Brewster
Klitschko suffered an upset TKO loss to Corrie Sanders on 8 March 2003 in Hanover, Germany. Sanders dropped Klitschko twice in the opening round and scored two more knockdowns in the second round before the bout was stopped by the official. The fight was named The Ring magazine Upset of the Year for 2003.
After winning two minor bouts in Germany and enlisting the services of legendary boxing trainer Emanuel Steward, Klitschko again fought for the vacated WBO title on 10 April 2004, in Las Vegas, against Lamon Brewster. Klitschko sent Brewster to the canvas in the fourth round; however, things turned around in the fifth when Brewster's punches began backing him up. Not defending himself and leaning into ropes for support, Klitschko took a standing eight count. On unsteady legs, Klitschko fell to the canvas after the bell and the referee stopped the fight for his safety.
Klitschko vs. Williamson, Castillo, Peter
Following his loss to Brewster, Klitschko began his journey back towards the top of the heavyweight division. First, he defeated DaVarryl Williamson by technical decision. The fight was halted because of a Klitschko cut caused by an accidental headbutt. He then knocked out undefeated Cuban contender Eliseo Castillo. Klitschko then signed to fight undefeated power puncher Samuel Peter in an IBF and WBO eliminator. Though Peter scored three knockdowns (two in round 5, one in round 10) Klitschko withstood the Nigerian's power and went on to outbox Peter for the majority of the rounds.
Klitschko vs. Byrd II, Brock, Austin
On 22 April 2006, in Mannheim, Germany, Klitschko defeated Chris Byrd for a second time, this time by technical knockout, in a contest for the IBF and IBO Heavyweight Championships. Referee Wayne Kelly stopped the fight in the seventh round after a knockdown. Byrd beat the count, but his face was battered and bloody, and the fight was waved off.
He returned in November, defeating Calvin Brock at Madison Square Garden. Klitschko then defeated mandatory challenger Ray Austin on 10 March 2007, at the SAP Arena in Mannheim, Germany by a second-round knockout with four consecutive left hooks to Austin's head.
Klitschko vs. Brewster II, Ibragimov, Thompson
Klitschko then avenged one of his previous losses as he defeated Lamon Brewster on 7 July 2007, in Cologne, Germany. Brewster's corner asked the referee to stop the fight at the end of the sixth round. It was later revealed that Klitschko fought most of the fight with a broken middle finger on his left hand.
Klitschko defeated WBO Heavyweight Champion Sultan Ibragimov at Madison Square Garden in New York City on 23 February 2008 to unify the IBF, IBO and WBO Heavyweight titles. The Klitschko-Ibragimov fight was the first heavyweight unification since Holyfield-Lewis in 1999. The unification clash with Ibragimov proved to be a huge disappointment for fans. Klitschko was very dominant from the first bell. He backed Ibragimov into a corner and proceeded to push down Ibragimov's glove with his left hand so he could not throw a punch. Though Klitschko won every single round, the crowd in New York City began booing after the second round. The boos and jeers increased as the fight progressed in the same fashion. Ibragimov's corner was almost silent from the sixth round onwards, unable to give their man any meaningful advice. Klitschko did not fight again in the United States until 2015 where he defeated Bryant Jennings.
On 12 July 2008, at the Color Line Arena in Hamburg, Klitschko faced mandatory challenger Tony Thompson, in a good action fight. Klitschko controlled the fight with his jab and right hand; Thompson had his moments but was outworked and out skilled for the majority of the rounds. Klitschko floored Thompson with a right hand in the 11th round and Thompson didn't beat the count.
Klitschko vs. Rahman, Chagaev, Chambers
Klitschko was scheduled to defend his titles against Alexander Povetkin later in 2008, but on 25 October, Povetkin withdrew from the fight due to an ankle injury. Instead, Klitschko faced Hasim Rahman on 13 December 2008 and won by TKO. This was the third time Klitschko fought at the SAP Arena in Mannheim, Germany. He dominated the fight, winning every round while making good use of his left jab. From the first bell the difference in physical strength was profound. Rahman seemed unable to withstand Klitschko's punch power. The referee finally called a stop to the one-sided contest in the 7th round after Rahman failed to respond to a series of good shots.
Klitschko was scheduled to face David Haye, who pulled out within weeks of the fight complaining of a back injury. Salvaging 20 June 2009 date and venue, Klitschko instead retained the IBF, WBO and IBO Heavyweight titles and also won the vacant Ring magazine heavyweight title by defeating replacement opponent and Ring No. 3 ranked Ruslan Chagaev when Chagaev retired after an onslaught of punches towards the end of the ninth round. There was a total of 61,000 fans in attendance at the Veltins Arena. As Chagaev was WBA Champion, the title was not on the line.
Klitschko's win over Chagaev was seen as one of his most impressive performances in the ring. He controlled the tempo of the fight from the very beginning and hit Chagaev at will with the jab. He hit Chagaev with several hard right crosses and never allowed him to build momentum. Towards the end of the second round Klitschko caught Chagaev off-balance and sent him to the canvas. Chagaev recovered but was dominated thereafter. This win had added significance because even though the WBA title was not on the line, many saw Klitschko as the rightful champion.
On 9 December 2009, Klitschko's management group, K2 Promotions confirmed that a bout with Eddie Chambers has been agreed to take place in Germany on 20 March 2010. This mandatory title defense, originally scheduled for December 2009 had to be delayed due to a hand injury that Klitschko sustained in training that required surgery.
Klitschko defeated Chambers by knockout five seconds before the end of the final round. He was criticized between rounds by his trainer Emanuel Steward for not fighting aggressively enough and began punching more often during the final round than he had done before which eventually led to his left hook hitting Chambers to the forehead. The punch made Chambers fall forwards and lost consciousness for an extended period of time. The referee stepped in and called an end to the contest instantly.
Klitschko vs. Peter II
Following the match with Chambers, a unification fight between Klitschko and David Haye, who, as of May 2009, had held the WBA title, appeared to be in the offing. Klitschko called out the Briton on YouTube in April 2010, stating, "I want to send this message to boxing fans and directly to David Haye. David, you've bitched out on fighting both Klitschko brothers twice already and now's the time to make it happen. On behalf of the boxing fans around the world, I am officially calling you out to fight me. You can't run away from me forever and you need to follow through with this fight if you want to be respected. I'm ready. What're you waiting for?"
Haye's trainer, Adam Booth, indicated that Haye would be willing to accept the challenge. Both sides began negotiations for a potential fight and the bout was targeted for September. As the negotiations continued to move forward, the unification fight between Klitschko and Haye was expected to take place in Germany rather than England. The IBF set a deadline to end negotiations on 17 May. A few days before the deadline to make the unification bout, Haye said he was interested in fighting the older Klitschko, Vitali, rather than Wladimir. The fight did not materialize and Klitschko was set to take on mandatory challenger Alexander Povetkin. On 17 May 2010, the 30-day period of negotiation began for Klitschko to defend his championship against Povetkin. Within this period, discussions to make a fight with Haye were still ongoing.
The bout between Klitschko and Povetkin was initially tentatively scheduled to take place in Frankfurt, Hessen, Germany, on 11 September 2010. In July 2010, it was confirmed that the bout would be taking place in Frankfurt. However, Povetkin, under trainer Teddy Atlas, backed out of the $2 million purse fight. Samuel Peter replaced Povetkin for the scheduled fight. Klitschko faced Peter for a second time, as they had fought in 2005 previously. Peter fought Klitschko on 11 September 2010, for the Ukrainian's IBF, WBO and IBO Heavyweight titles. Klitschko won again, by knocking out Peter in the 10th round.
Peter weighed in at 241 pounds, two pounds lighter than their first fight. Klitschko came in at a career heavy of 247 pounds. Peter started the fight very aggressively and caught Klitschko with a good left hook in the opening minute, although Klitschko ended the round well. Peter was caught with three hard right-hands in the second round, one of which seemed to stun him. Peter tried to duck under the Klitschko jab, but was being tied up on the inside. After four rounds, the fight became one-sided in Klitschko's favour. Peter's right eye was closing and he was taking heavy punishment. After the ninth round, Peter's trainer Abel Sanchez said he would give him one more round. Emmanuel Steward also implored Klitschko to be more aggressive. Peter swung wildly in the tenth and Klitschko put him down with a concussive combination. Referee Robert Byrd did not start a count and waved the fight off, awarding Klitschko the win by knockout. Klitschko, however, was set to fight Dereck Chisora on 11 December, but the fight was later called off on 8 December due to Klitschko tearing a muscle in his abdomen.
Klitschko vs. Haye
On 5 January 2011, it was announced that Dereck Chisora would get his fight with Klitschko. This enraged David Haye's trainer Adam Booth, who described the move as a "disgrace" on a heated live phone-in with Sky Sports News. Booth alleged Haye had met every single one of Klitschko's demands. The fight against Dereck Chisora was rescheduled for 30 April 2011 and was going to take place in SAP Arena, Mannheim. However, on 4 March, it was announced that Klitschko had pulled out of the fight due to not being fully recovered from a torn abdominal muscle. On 5 March, it was instead announced that the highly anticipated fight against David Haye would take place on 2 July 2011. The fight was contingent on Klitschko's recovery from a torn abdominal muscle injury. The contract was written so that if Klitschko was not fully healed, then Haye would fight his brother, Vitali.
Klitschko fought David Haye in a heavyweight unification fight for the WBA (Super), WBO, IBF, IBO and The Ring Heavyweight titles. The fight took place at the Imtech Arena, Hamburg, Germany on 2 July 2011. Klitschko and Haye agreed to a 50-50 split of the purse and Haye was allotted 7000 seats at the venue. Klitschko dominated the fight, statistically outlanding Haye nearly 2 to 1. Klitschko won by unanimous decision then the three judges scored it 118–108, 117–109, and 116–110 all in favour of Klitschko. Haye revealed afterwards that he had a broken toe.
After winning the WBA title, all of the major Heavyweight titles were in the hands of the Klitschko family. Wladimir and Vitali became the first and only pair of brothers to hold all of the heavyweight titles simultaneously.
Klitschko vs. Mormeck, Thompson II, Wach
On 6 October 2011, Klitschko announced his next fight. It was originally to be on 10 December 2011 against the former two time unified World Cruiserweight Champion, French Jean-Marc Mormeck. The fight would have taken place at Esprit Arena, Düsseldorf. It was to be Wladimir's first title defense of the WBA (Super) belt, he won against David Haye. The fight was billed Alle Gürtel. Ein Champion. (All belts. One Champion). However, on 5 December 2011, the fight was cancelled because Wladimir checked into a hospital to have a kidney stone removed. After the removal operation he suffered from fever and inflammation. The fight was rescheduled for 3 March 2012, with Wladimir Klitschko knocking out Jean-Marc Mormeck in the fourth round. On 7 July, he faced Tony Thompson in a rematch in Stade de Suisse Wankdorf, Bern, Switzerland. Tony Thompson had been named as Wladimir Klitschko's mandatory defense by the IBF.
On 7 July 2012, Klitschko faced Tony Thompson for a second time who had worked his way into a mandatory position. Klitschko stopped Thompson in the sixth round after putting him to the canvas with flush right hand shot. It was his 12th consecutive title defense, the third-most in heavyweight history.
Klitschko defended his belts in Hamburg on 10 November 2012 via one sided unanimous decision. His opponent for the fight was former undefeated 27–0 (15 KO) polish contender Mariusz Wach. The fight with Wach was the first time in his 16-year pro career he had faced an opponent taller than himself. At 2.02 metres tall, with a reach of 2.08 metres and weighing 251 pounds, the Kraków-born Wach, who is based in the United States, is 4 centimetres taller than Klitschko with a reach two centimeters longer. The fight with Wach was the first fight under Johnathon Banks' coaching.
Klitschko vs. Pianeta, Povetkin, Leapai
At the end of 2012, the World Boxing Association ordered its super-champion Klitschko to fight WBA regular-champion Alexander Povetkin of Russia by 24 February 2013, but the two sides couldn't reach an agreement. WBA let Klitschko have another voluntary title defence before taking on Povetkin, but there should have been a signed contract with Povetkin before 28 February, with a new deadline for their bout no later than 31 July.
Klitschko took on another undefeated contender, Italian Francesco Pianeta, on 4 May. From the start, he systematically broke down the Italian, consistently landing flush straight right hand shots. He dropped Pianeta with a right hand in round four, a left hand put Pianeta down in the fifth; the fight ended at 2:52 in round six when Klitschko put Pianeta down for the third time.
Promoter Vladimir Hryunov won the right to promote the fight with a purse bid of $23,333,330 and Russian businessman Andrey Ryabinsky putting up the money. Failed bids made were from K2 Promotions ($7,130,000) and Povetkin's promoter Sauerland Event ($6,014,444). It allowed Ryabinsky to dictate the location of the fight and guaranteed the fighters the biggest purses of their careers. Based on being entitled to 75 percent of the winning bid, Klitschko got $17,499,997, while Povetkin received $5,833,333. The Klitschko camp were said to be surprised by the bid.
The fight took place in October 2013, Klitschko's third undefeated consecutive opponent. The bout was marred with over 160 clinches, most initiated by Klitschko, followed by several repeated roughhouse tactics throughout the match against Povetkin. This included leaning on his opponent and pushing his head down and throwing Povetkin to the canvas, which resulted in the referee scoring some as knockdowns. Klitschko won by unanimous decision scoring a knockdown in round 2 from a flush jab, and 3 knockdowns in round 7 including one prompted from a big right uppercut. All 3 judges scored it 119–104 on the scorecards. Klitschko landed 139 of 417 punches (33%) and Povetkin connected on 59 of 283 (21%).
In his next fight, Klitschko defended his titles against WBO mandatory challenger Alex Leapai on 26 April 2014 in Germany. He knocked Leapai down three times, and referee Eddie Cotton stopped the fight with fifty-five seconds remaining in the fifth round.
Klitschko vs. Pulev, Jennings
On 15 November 2014 he faced undefeated Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev for the IBF title in Hamburg. For Pulev, only the IBF title was on the line because he chose not to pay the sanctioning fees of the other organizations. In front of a sellout crowd of 15,000, Klitschko knocked Pulev down twice in the first round and once in the third round, before knocking Pulev out on a thunderous left hook to end the match.
On January 20, 2015 ESPN reported that the potential Klitschko vs. Jennings was confirmed and to take place on April 25, 2015. Negotiations initially started in November 2014. Klitschko's manager, Bernd Boente finally announced the fight and said all contracts had been signed. The Barclays Center in Brooklyn was originally chosen to stage the fight, but no reason was given for the change of venue.
It would be the fourth time Wladimir would fight at the Garden, his first time at the arena and the United States since 2008, defending his WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO and The Ring heavyweight titles. He defeated Jennings by effective use of his jab and nullifying Jennings' offensive game on the inside, especially by holding Jennings, which resulted in the referee deducting a point in the 10th round for excessive holding, although Klitschko did end up winning via unanimous decision with scores of 116–111, 116–111, and 118–109. According to Compubox Stats, Klitschko landed 144 of his 545 punches thrown (26%) whilst Jennings landed 110 of 376 (29 percent). According to Nielsen Media Research, the fight averaged 1.637 million viewers, peaking at 1.742 million viewers.
Klitschko vs. Fury
Klitschko was scheduled to take on undefeated heavyweight contender Tyson Fury, the WBO mandatory challenger, on 24 October 2015 in an unprecedented 28th heavyweight world title appearance. On 25 September 2015, Klitschko postponed the fight, citing a calf injury. It was rescheduled for Saturday, 28 November 2015. Klitschko lost the fight by unanimous decision, with scores of 116–111, 115–112, and 115–112 all in favor of Fury. It was the first defeat Klitschko had suffered in over ten years and marked the end of the so-called 'Klitschko Era' referring to the time period where both Klitschko brothers (particularly Wladimir) dominated the division.
Klitschko was entitled to a rematch with Fury as part of the contract for their first fight. The rematch was eventually announced on 8 April 2016 and set to take place in Fury's home town at Manchester Arena in Manchester, England on 9 July 2016. However, Tyson Fury announced via a YouTube video that the fight would be postponed due to an ankle sprain he had received during training. He apologised to his fans and confirmed the fight would be rescheduled for a later date. On Thursday 7 July, Fury announced via his Twitter account that the rescheduled fight would take place on 29 October at Manchester Arena. On 23 September, Fury again postponed the fight after being declared "medically unfit", before eventually vacating the WBA "Super", WBO and IBO titles, citing problems with depression after testing positive for cocaine. The rematch with Klitschko was cancelled as a result.
Klitschko vs. Joshua
Days after the Fury rematch was called off, Klitschko was approached by Eddie Hearn, promoter of IBF champion Anthony Joshua, to fight on the 28 November date they had set for a second defence. Terms seemed to have been agreed for a $30m fight showdown although an initial contract was yet to be signed. After Fury gave up his world titles, it was said that Klitschko wanted the WBA title up for grabs in the potential match up against Joshua and waiting for approval, which the WBA kept postponing. A reason as to why the WBA was delaying sanctioning the fight was due them having a legal settlement with Lucas Browne so he could fight for the vacant title next. Klitschko then turned his attention to fighting Browne instead on 10 December, a date his team had an arena set for in Germany. On 24 October, Klitschko suffered a minor calf injury which would rule him out until 2017. Talks between the Klitschko camp and Hearn remained active with a fight set for the first part of 2017. On 2 November, the WBA finally agreed to sanction a fight for their super title as long as Joshua defeats Eric Molina in December 2016.
On 10 December, immediately after Joshua had defeated Molina in Manchester Arena, Klitschko was invited into the ring by Hearn. It was announced that Klitschko and Joshua would face each other for the IBF and WBA Super titles at Wembley Stadium, London, on 29 April 2017. WBA president Gilberto Jesus Mendoza confirmed that the winner will have to face mandatory challenger Luis Ortiz next, with deadlines due to be set after the unification fight. A day later the IBF announced the winner must fight their mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev. Because of this clashing with the WBA enforcing their mandatory, it was believed that either Joshua or Klitschko would have to vacate a title. In January 2017, Eddie Hearn announced that over 80,000 tickets had been sold, a new box office record, overtaking Carl Froch vs. George Groves II. He put a request in for 5,000 more tickets to be made available. At the weigh in, Klitschko weighed in at 240 and a quarter pounds, the lightest he has weighed since 2009. Joshua came in heavier at 250 pounds.
In front of a post-war record crowd of 90,000 in attendance, Joshua won by TKO in a high-drama war that saw both men giving their all. They fought a close and cautious first four rounds. In the fifth, Joshua came out roaring and barraged Klitschko to the canvas. An angry Klitschko rose up and dominated Joshua for the remainder of the round, before landing a clean right hand and scoring his own knockdown in round 6. The next few rounds were again cautious, both men wary of each other, until a reinvigorated Joshua attacked Klitschko in round 11 with an upper-cut blow to the right side of Klitschko's face which would be the beginning of the end for the Ukrainian. Joshua then put together a few small but powerful combinations which sent his opponent to the canvas. Klitschko again rose but Joshua knocked him down for a second time in the round by unleashing a devastating combination of 7 punches flooring Klitschko with his deadly left hook. Moments later Joshua tried to end the fight by swinging a few right hooks and managed to back Klitschko in to the ropes where he again sent a barrage of punches with no reply. The referee then concluded that Klitschko had taken enough punishment and stopped the fight.
At the time of stoppage, Joshua was ahead on two judges scorecards (96–93 and 95–93) and the third judge had Klitschko ahead (95–93). CompuBox stats showed that Joshua landed 107 of his 355 punches thrown (30%), and Klitschko landed 94 of 256 (37%). In the post fight interviews, Klitschko spoke about the rematch clause, but gave no indication as to whether he would activate it, "Of course we have a rematch in the contract. I need to analyze and see what the heck happened. I wish I could have raised my hands, but congrats to him. He got up, he fought back, and he won the titles." In the press conference after the fight, Joshua said he would have no issues with having another fight with Klitschko, "I don’t mind fighting him again, if he wants the rematch. Big respect to Wladimir for challenging the young lions of the division. It’s up to him, I don’t mind. As long as Rob thinks it’s good I’m good to go." Eddie Hearn said Joshua's next fight would likely take place at the end of the year, possibly at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff.
The fight averaged 659,000 viewers on Showtime in the United States. It was show live and the fight began around 5 p.m. ET and 2 p.m. PT. Nielsen Media Research revealed the fight peaked at 687,000 viewers which was during rounds five and six. The delayed tape-replay on HBO was watched by an average 738,000 viewers and peaked at 890,000. In a press release, German TV channel RTL announced the fight was watched by an average 10.43 million viewers. The whole card averaged 9.59 million viewers. This was higher than the 8.91 million that tuned in to watch Klitschko vs. Fury in 2015. The did lower numbers than Klitschko's win over Mariusz Wach in 2012, which was watched by 11 million and Klitschko vs. Haye, which was seen by over 16 million.
On 7 June 2017, the IBF granted Joshua an exception for him to rematch Klitschko instead of fighting mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev. At this point, it was not said that the rematch would take place. Klitschko said he needed time to review his situation before agreeing to a rematch. It was only weeks after the fight, when Eddie Hearn filed the paperwork to the IBF to request the exception to the mandatory defense. IBF explained that the rematch must take place no later than 2 December 2017 and the winner must fight Pulev next with no exceptions.
Klitschko appeared with Lennox Lewis in the motion picture Ocean's Eleven. He is an avid chess player, kitesurfer, golfer and humanitarian. Both Klitschko brothers have been involved in charitable activities dedicated to supporting the needs of children around the world. Both brothers have formed their own charities that contribute to children in need in Africa and South America. They won humanitarian awards for their "Sport for Good" projects in 2002 and 2007. In 2002, the Klitschko brothers announced that they had agreed to work specifically for UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), which supports more than 180 projects in 87 countries.
Klitschko is also a passionate golfer and was seen playing in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland. The tournament was played over three courses in 2008 including St Andrews, Carnoustie, and Kingsbarns in Fife and Angus. Klitschko was named curator of the Ukrainian pavilion at the 2009 Venice Biennale.
Since 2009, Klitschko has been in a relationship with American actress Hayden Panettiere. In October 2013, Panettiere confirmed that she and Klitschko were engaged. They have one child together, a daughter named Kaya Evdokia Klitschko, born in 2014.
Panettiere has appeared ringside at some of Klitschko's fights, including at Klitschko's 10th-round KO victory over Samuel Peter. The couple had a brief split in 2011, but as of 2013 were together again.
On 6 December 2013, Klitschko and his fiancée Hayden Panettiere visited the Euromaidan-protests in Kiev. His brother Vitali was one of the leading figures of these protests. He and his fiancée addressed the crowds.
Wladimir and his brother Vitali have never fought each other in a professional fight as their mother made them promise to never fight each other.
Klitschko speaks four languages: Ukrainian, Russian, English and German.
On 29 March 2012, during a charitable auction in Kiev, Ukraine, Wladimir auctioned off his 1996 Olympic gold medal to a buyer who bid $1 million. Klitschko said he would use the money to help the dreams of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian children. After the sale, the buyer immediately returned the medal out of respect for Wladimir and because he wanted it to remain with the Klitschko family.
Professional boxing record
|Professional record summary|
|69 fights||64 wins||5 losses|
|69||Loss||64–5||Anthony Joshua||TKO||11 (12), 2:25||29 Apr 2017||Wembley Stadium, London, England||For IBF, vacant WBA (Super) and IBO heavyweight titles|
|68||Loss||64–4||Tyson Fury||UD||12||28 Nov 2015||Esprit Arena, Düsseldorf, Germany||Lost WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|67||Win||64–3||Bryant Jennings||UD||12||25 Apr 2015||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|66||Win||63–3||Kubrat Pulev||KO||5 (12), 2:11||15 Nov 2014||O2 World, Hamburg, Germany||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|65||Win||62–3||Alex Leapai||TKO||5 (12), 2:05||26 Apr 2014||König Pilsener Arena, Oberhausen, Germany||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|64||Win||61–3||Alexander Povetkin||UD||12||5 Oct 2013||Olympic Stadium, Moscow, Russia||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|63||Win||60–3||Francesco Pianeta||TKO||6 (12), 2:52||4 May 2013||SAP Arena, Mannheim, Germany||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|62||Win||59–3||Mariusz Wach||UD||12||10 Nov 2012||O2 World, Hamburg, Germany||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|61||Win||58–3||Tony Thompson||TKO||6 (12), 1:12||7 Jul 2012||Stade de Suisse, Bern, Switzerland||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|60||Win||57–3||Jean-Marc Mormeck||KO||4 (12), 1:12||3 Mar 2012||Esprit Arena, Düsseldorf, Germany||Retained WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|59||Win||56–3||David Haye||UD||12||2 Jul 2011||Imtech Arena, Hamburg, Germany||Retained IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles;
Won WBA (Super) heavyweight title
|58||Win||55–3||Samuel Peter||KO||10 (12), 1:22||11 Sep 2010||Commerzbank-Arena, Frankfurt, Germany||Retained IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|57||Win||54–3||Eddie Chambers||KO||12 (12), 2:55||20 Mar 2010||Esprit Arena, Düsseldorf, Germany||Retained IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles|
|56||Win||53–3||Ruslan Chagaev||RTD||9 (12), 3:00||20 Jun 2009||Veltins-Arena, Gelsenkirchen, Germany||Retained IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight titles;
Won vacant The Ring and lineal heavyweight titles
|55||Win||52–3||Hasim Rahman||TKO||7 (12), 0:44||13 Dec 2008||SAP Arena, Mannheim, Germany||Retained IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight titles|
|54||Win||51–3||Tony Thompson||KO||11 (12), 1:38||12 Jul 2008||Color Line Arena, Hamburg, Germany||Retained IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight titles|
|53||Win||50–3||Sultan Ibragimov||UD||12||23 Feb 2008||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US||Retained IBF and IBO heavyweight titles;
Won WBO heavyweight title
|52||Win||49–3||Lamon Brewster||RTD||6 (12), 3:00||7 Jul 2007||Kölnarena, Cologne, Germany||Retained IBF and IBO heavyweight titles|
|51||Win||48–3||Ray Austin||KO||2 (12), 1:23||10 Mar 2007||SAP Arena, Mannheim, Germany||Retained IBF and IBO heavyweight titles|
|50||Win||47–3||Calvin Brock||TKO||7 (12), 2:10||11 Nov 2006||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US||Retained IBF and IBO heavyweight titles|
|49||Win||46–3||Chris Byrd||TKO||7 (12), 0:41||22 Apr 2006||SAP Arena, Mannheim, Germany||Won IBF and vacant IBO heavyweight titles|
|48||Win||45–3||Samuel Peter||UD||12||24 Sep 2005||Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, US||Won NABF and vacant WBO–NABO heavyweight titles|
|47||Win||44–3||Eliseo Castillo||TKO||4 (10), 2:51||23 Apr 2005||Westfalenhallen, Dortmund, Germany|
|46||Win||43–3||DaVarryl Williamson||TD||5 (10), 3:00||2 Oct 2004||Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, US||Split TD after Klitschko sustained a cut from an accidental head clash|
|45||Loss||42–3||Lamon Brewster||TKO||5 (12), 3:00||10 Apr 2004||Mandalay Bay Events Center, Paradise, Nevada, US||For vacant WBO heavyweight title|
|44||Win||42–2||Danell Nicholson||TKO||4 (12), 1:44||20 Dec 2003||Ostseehalle, Kiel, Germany||Retained WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title|
|43||Win||41–2||Fabio Eduardo Moli||KO||1 (12), 1:49||30 Aug 2003||Olympiahalle, Munich, Germany||Won vacant WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title|
|42||Loss||40–2||Corrie Sanders||TKO||2 (12), 0:27||8 Mar 2003||Preussag Arena, Hanover, Germany||Lost WBO heavyweight title|
|41||Win||40–1||Jameel McCline||RTD||10 (12), 3:00||7 Dec 2002||Mandalay Bay Events Center, Paradise, Nevada, US||Retained WBO heavyweight title|
|40||Win||39–1||Ray Mercer||TKO||6 (12), 1:08||29 Jun 2002||Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, US||Retained WBO heavyweight title|
|39||Win||38–1||Francois Botha||TKO||8 (12), 0:47||16 Mar 2002||Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle, Stuttgart, Germany||Retained WBO heavyweight title|
|38||Win||37–1||Charles Shufford||TKO||6 (12), 2:55||4 Aug 2001||Mandalay Bay Events Center, Paradise, Nevada, US||Retained WBO heavyweight title|
|37||Win||36–1||Derrick Jefferson||TKO||2 (12), 2:09||24 Mar 2001||Rudi-Sedlmayer-Halle, Munich, Germany||Retained WBO heavyweight title|
|36||Win||35–1||Chris Byrd||UD||12||14 Oct 2000||Kölnarena, Cologne, Germany||Won WBO heavyweight title|
|35||Win||34–1||Monte Barrett||TKO||7 (10), 2:40||15 Jul 2000||London Arena, London, England|
|34||Win||33–1||David Bostice||TKO||2 (12), 1:27||29 Apr 2000||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US||Retained WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title|
|33||Win||32–1||Paea Wolfgramm||KO||1 (12), 1:30||18 Mar 2000||Alsterdorfer Sporthalle, Hamburg, Germany||Won vacant WBC International heavyweight title|
|32||Win||31–1||Lajos Eros||KO||2 (12), 2:35||4 Dec 1999||Stadionsporthalle, Hanover, Germany||Retained WBA Inter-Continental and European heavyweight titles|
|31||Win||30–1||Phil Jackson||KO||2 (10), 1:59||12 Nov 1999||The Orleans, Paradise, Nevada, US|
|30||Win||29–1||Axel Schulz||TKO||8 (12), 2:42||25 Sep 1999||Kölnarena, Cologne, Germany||Retained WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title;
Won vacant European heavyweight title
|29||Win||28–1||Joseph Chingangu||RTD||4 (12), 3:00||17 Jul 1999||Philips Halle, Düsseldorf, Germany||Won vacant WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title|
|28||Win||27–1||Tony LaRosa||TKO||1 (10), 2:57||22 May 1999||Sport Palace, Budapest, Hungary|
|27||Win||26–1||Everett Martin||TKO||8 (8)||24 Apr 1999||Circus Krone Building, Munich, Germany|
|26||Win||25–1||Zoran Vujicic||KO||1 (8), 1:02||13 Feb 1999||Maritim Hotel, Stuttgart, Germany|
|25||Loss||24–1||Ross Puritty||TKO||11 (12), 0:18||5 Dec 1998||Palace of Sports, Kiev, Ukraine||Lost WBC International heavyweight title|
|24||Win||24–0||Donnell Wingfield||KO||1 (8)||14 Nov 1998||Circus Krone Building, Munich, Germany|
|23||Win||23–0||Eli Dixon||KO||3 (10), 2:26||3 Oct 1998||Prinz-Garden Halle, Augsburg, Germany|
|22||Win||22–0||Steve Pannell||KO||2 (10)||19 Sep 1998||Arena Oberhausen, Oberhausen, Germany|
|21||Win||21–0||Carlos Monroe||TKO||6 (10), 2:28||6 Aug 1998||Grand Casino Avoyelles, Marksville, Louisiana, US|
|20||Win||20–0||Najee Shaheed||KO||1 (12)||10 Jul 1998||Circus Krone Building, Munich, Germany||Retained WBC International heavyweight title|
|19||Win||19–0||Cody Koch||KO||4 (12)||23 May 1998||Oberrheinhalle, Offenburg, Germany||Retained WBC International heavyweight title|
|18||Win||18–0||Everett Martin||TKO||8||13 Mar 1998||Sporthalle Wandsbek, Hamburg, Germany|
|17||Win||17–0||Marcus McIntyre||KO||3 (12)||14 Feb 1998||Maritim Hotel, Stuttgart, Germany||Won vacant WBC International heavyweight title|
|16||Win||16–0||Derrick Lampkins||TKO||1 (8)||20 Dec 1997||Oberrheinhalle, Offenburg, Germany|
|15||Win||15–0||Ladislav Husarik||TKO||3 (8)||13 Dec 1997||Alsterdorfer Sporthalle, Hamburg, Germany|
|14||Win||14–0||Jerry Halstead||TKO||2 (8)||6 Dec 1997||Stadthalle, Offenbach am Main, Germany|
|13||Win||13–0||Marcos González||KO||2 (8)||11 Oct 1997||Stadthalle, Cottbus, Germany|
|12||Win||12–0||James Pritchard||TKO||3 (8)||20 Sep 1997||Tivoli Eissporthalle, Aachen, Germany|
|11||Win||11–0||Biko Botowamungu||DQ||5 (8), 0:02||23 Aug 1997||Maritim Hotel, Stuttgart, Germany||Botowamungu disqualified after his cornermen refused to leave the ring|
|10||Win||10–0||Gilberto Williamson||TKO||3 (8)||12 Jul 1997||Berlet-Halle, Hagen, Germany|
|9||Win||9–0||Salvador Maciel||KO||1 (8)||27 Jun 1997||Oberrheinhalle, Offenburg, Germany|
|8||Win||8–0||Paul Ashley||KO||2 (8), 1:25||13 Jun 1997||Arena Oberhausen, Oberhausen, Germany|
|7||Win||7–0||Mark Wills||KO||1 (8), 2:58||10 May 1997||Ballsporthalle, Frankfurt, Germany|
|6||Win||6–0||Mark Young||RTD||2 (6), 3:00||12 Apr 1997||Eurogress, Aachen, Germany|
|5||Win||5–0||Carlos Monroe||DQ||6 (6), 0:34||15 Feb 1997||Stadthalle, Cottbus, Germany||Monroe disqualified for a headbutt|
|4||Win||4–0||Troy Weida||TKO||3 (6), 0:36||25 Jan 1997||Maritim Hotel, Stuttgart, Germany|
|3||Win||3–0||Bill Corrigan||TKO||1 (4), 1:21||21 Dec 1996||Zoological Garden, Frankfurt, Germany|
|2||Win||2–0||Exum Speight||TKO||2 (4), 1:54||30 Nov 1996||Arena Nova, Wiener Neustadt, Austria|
|1||Win||1–0||Fabian Meza||KO||1 (4), 1:35||16 Nov 1996||Sporthalle Wandsbek, Hamburg, Germany||Professional debut|
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- "Hayden Panettiere and Wladimir Klitschko Welcome Baby Girl". Yahoo!.
- Eisinger, Amy (5 January 2010). "Hayden Panettiere Gets Cozy with Boxing Champ Wladimir Klitschko in Miami". New York: nydailynews.comcom.
- "Hayden Panettiere opens up about beau Wladimir Klitschko". Los Angeles Times. 2 April 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
- Panettiere on Euromaidan: I have a lot of respect for people who come out for what they believe in, Interfax-Ukraine (6 December 2013)
- Why do Ukraine protests matter?, BBC News (3 December 2013)
- Activists pitching army tents at Independence Square in Kyiv, Interfax-Ukraine (3 December 2013)
- (in Russian) Владимир Кличко и Хайден Панеттьери на Евромайдане: видео Wladimir Klitschko and Hayden Panettiere on Euromaidan: video, LIGA.net, 7 December 2013.
- Gary Morley and Matt Vigil (8 April 2015). "Wladimir Klitschko: Iron Curtain no barrier for 'Dr. Steelhammer'". CNN.com. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
- "Photo session". Vanity Fair Deutschland. 21 August 2008. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- "Karolina ist ein ganz offenes Mädel". Bild (in German). 26 August 2008. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- Klitschko v Fury: Has Wladimir really killed heavyweight boxing?, BBC Sport (23 November 2015 )
- Ruslan Chikov (29 March 2012). W. Klitschko's Gold Medal Grabs $1 Million at Charity Event, Boxingscene.com. Retrieved 8 July 2012.
- Boxer Klitschko auctions gold medal for $1 million. Retrieved 28 December 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Wladimir Klitschko.|
- Official website
- Professional boxing record for Wladimir Klitschko from BoxRec
- Wladimir Klitschko at Sports Reference
- Wladimir Klitschko on IMDb
- Real Stories: Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko at Grantland
- Wladimir Klitschko profile at About.com
|Regional boxing titles|
Title last held byIke Ibeabuchi
|WBC International heavyweight champion
14 February 1998 – 5 December 1998
Title last held byDonovan Ruddock
|WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight champion
17 July 1999 – October 2000
Title next held byVitali Klitschko
Title last held byVitali Klitschko
|European heavyweight champion
25 September 1999 – October 2000
Title next held byVitali Klitschko
Title last held byRoss Puritty
|WBC International heavyweight champion
18 March 2000 – April 2000
Title next held byHenry Akinwande
Title last held byVitali Klitschko
|WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight champion
30 August 2003 – April 2004
Title next held byNikolay Valuev
|NABF heavyweight champion
24 September 2005 – April 2006
Title next held bySamuel Peter
Title last held byDaVarryl Williamson
|WBO–NABO heavyweight champion
24 September 2005 – April 2006
Title next held byShannon Briggs
|Minor world boxing titles|
Title last held byLennox Lewis
|IBO heavyweight champion
22 April 2006 – 28 November 2015
|Major world boxing titles|
|WBO heavyweight champion
14 October 2000 – 8 March 2003
|IBF heavyweight champion
22 April 2006 – 28 November 2015
|WBO heavyweight champion
23 February 2008 – 28 November 2015
Title last held byVitali Klitschko
|The Ring heavyweight champion
20 June 2009 – 28 November 2015
Title last held byLennox Lewis
|Lineal heavyweight champion
20 June 2009 – 28 November 2015
|New title||WBA heavyweight champion
2 July 2011 – 28 November 2015
|Honorary boxing titles|
|Non-transferable title||WBO Super champion
July 2008 – November 2016
TKO1 Chad Dawson
|ESPN Knockout of the Year
KO5 Kubrat Pulev
KO3 James Kirkland