Former heavyweight world champion Wladimir Klitschko has announced his shock retirement from boxing with immediate effect, ending any chance of a rematch against heavyweight world champion Anthony Joshua.
The Ukrainian was defeated by Joshua in a heavyweight blockbuster back in April and the Brit was eyeing another colossal bout in Las Vegas on November 11.
However, the 41-year-old released a video to confirm that he has decided to call time on his 21-year career in the sport.
“I have achieved everything I dreamed of, and now I want to start my second career after sports,” he said.
“I would have never imagined that I would have such a long and incredibly successful boxing career,” he added.
The two-time former champion, who held the unified title from 2006-2015 before losing to Joshua’s fellow Briton Tyson Fury, ends his career with a record of 64 wins and five defeats.
He retires as one of the sport’s true greats, having held the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO heavyweight titles, as well as the lineal crown, and remains the second-longest serving heavyweight champion of all time behind Joe Louis with 18 consecutive defences over a nine-year span.