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Oleksandr Usyk offered an opportunity to leave Ukraine’s Defense Forces and train for the government’s Anthony Joshua rematch, meaning the next fight could now happen

Oleksandr Usyk and Vasyl Lomachenko have both been given the opportunity to leave the war in Ukraine and train for their possible next fights, promoter Bob Arum has revealed.

Usyk is contracted to a rematch with Anthony Joshua, whom he next defeated in 2021, while Loma is in for a shot at new lightweight champion George Kambosos Jr.

Usyk joined the Kyiv Territorial Defense

LomUs – Instagram

Usyk joined the Kyiv Territorial Defense

Lomachenko joined the territorial defense of Belgorod-Dnestrovsky

LomUs – Instagram

Lomachenko joined the territorial defense of Belgorod-Dnestrovsky

However, when Russia invaded Ukraine, both men flew home and joined their local Territorial Defense Forces.

Usyk and Loma were therefore expected to be sidelined for the time being.

As a result, there was talk of AJ having a melee match against another opponent and Kambosos Jr. taking on Devin Haney instead.

Now, however, it looks like Ukrainian boxers will have the opportunity to decide for themselves whether to stay and defend their country or represent Ukraine on the world stage.

Joshua could fulfill his wish to face Usyk next depending on what the Ukrainian decides to do

Mark Robinson/Matchroom

Joshua could fulfill his wish to face Usyk next depending on what the Ukrainian decides to do

When asked for an update on Loma vs Kambosos, Arum told Fanatics View: “The Ukrainian government, which is great, is working with us on Lomachenko and also on Usyk.

“They realize there’s tremendous promotional value when they come out and train and compete in title fights.

“Hopefully the war will be over by then, but if not, [they will then] go back into defense mode.

“So I don’t know how it is with both guys, if they will accept the offer from the Minister of Culture of Ukraine to go and train for fights.”

Kambosos Jr. is the lightweight champion awaiting Lomachenko's decision

Melina Pizano/Matchroom

Kambosos Jr. is the lightweight champion awaiting Lomachenko’s decision

Before this news broke, Joshua gave an update on his future on Friday.

Speaking on Instagram Live on Friday, Joshua said: “When’s the next fight? It’s actually starting soon.

“I don’t want to say too much, but yes, the fight is coming soon.

“I pray it’s the rematch [vs Oleksandr Usyk]. I will not fight anyone outside the top ten.”

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https://talksport.com/sport/boxing/1068099/oleksandr-usyk-ukraine-anthony-joshua-rematch/ Oleksandr Usyk offered an opportunity to leave Ukraine’s Defense Forces and train for the government’s Anthony Joshua rematch, meaning the next fight could now happen

Andrew Schnitker

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