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Oleksandr Usyk makes major Saudi Arabia move by signing with Skill Challenge Entertainment as Saudis eye Tyson Fury fight

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Oleksandr Usyk has signed with Saudi Arabia’s Skill Challenge Entertainment.

The unified WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight world champion announced on Saturday that he was joining the company responsible for staging major events in the Middle East in recent years.

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Usyk is the WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight championCredit: Getty
Usyk beat Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia, after AJ previously beat Andy Ruiz there

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Usyk beat Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia, after AJ previously beat Andy Ruiz there
Usyk looked delighted to have signed

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Usyk looked delighted to have signedCredit: @skillchallengepromotions

Skill Challenge Entertainment is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s official boxing promotional company, and will represent Usyk alongside existing promoter Alex Krassyuk of K2 Promotions.

It was founded by His Highness Prince Khalid bin Salman Al Saud, who is the son of King Salman and serves as the Saudi Arabian minister of defence.

The purpose of the company is to align with Saudi Arabia’s ‘Vision 2030’ campaign, which aims to reduce Saudi’s dependence on oil, diversify its economy, with a focus on changing the country’s image and increasing tourism.

This began in 2019 when they paid a major site fee to buy the rights for Anthony Joshua’s rematch with Andy Ruiz.

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It was a move that came as a major shock at the time, with top level boxing seldom ever having been staged in the region previously, apart from Callum Smith’s win over George Groves in the 2018 World Boxing Super Series final.

As a result, the Saudis have faced accusations of sportswashing due to the country’s highly questionable human rights record.

The pandemic interrupted plans, but Skill Challenge Entertainment returned last year with another big site fee which saw them secure the rights to AJ’s rematch with Usyk.

After seeing Usyk emerge victorious with the titles, they attempted to put on an undisputed title showdown with Tyson Fury at the start of this year, but this did not come to fruition.

Instead, Saudi Arabia staged Tommy Fury’s win over Jake Paul in February.

It’s known Skill Challenge Entertainment have ambitious plans to make both Fury vs Usyk and Joshua vs Deontay Wilder in December, potentially on the same night.

To help make this happen, they have now inked a deal to represent Usyk themselves.

Time will tell if that super heavyweight show comes to fruition, but for now Usyk must make a mandatory defence of his belts against Daniel Dubois.

This bout is planned for August 26 in Wroclaw, Poland.




Oleksandr Usyk has signed with Saudi Arabia’s Skill Challenge Entertainment.

The unified WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight world champion announced on Saturday that he was joining the company responsible for staging major events in the Middle East in recent years.

Usyk is the WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight champion

3

Usyk is the WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight championCredit: Getty
Usyk beat Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia, after AJ previously beat Andy Ruiz there

3

Usyk beat Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia, after AJ previously beat Andy Ruiz there
Usyk looked delighted to have signed

3

Usyk looked delighted to have signedCredit: @skillchallengepromotions

Skill Challenge Entertainment is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s official boxing promotional company, and will represent Usyk alongside existing promoter Alex Krassyuk of K2 Promotions.

It was founded by His Highness Prince Khalid bin Salman Al Saud, who is the son of King Salman and serves as the Saudi Arabian minister of defence.

The purpose of the company is to align with Saudi Arabia’s ‘Vision 2030’ campaign, which aims to reduce Saudi’s dependence on oil, diversify its economy, with a focus on changing the country’s image and increasing tourism.

This began in 2019 when they paid a major site fee to buy the rights for Anthony Joshua’s rematch with Andy Ruiz.

Fury considers call-out from heavyweight who lost out on Joshua fight due to drugs
'I'll still f*** your girl' - Anthony Joshua lashes out in stunning deleted post

It was a move that came as a major shock at the time, with top level boxing seldom ever having been staged in the region previously, apart from Callum Smith’s win over George Groves in the 2018 World Boxing Super Series final.

As a result, the Saudis have faced accusations of sportswashing due to the country’s highly questionable human rights record.

The pandemic interrupted plans, but Skill Challenge Entertainment returned last year with another big site fee which saw them secure the rights to AJ’s rematch with Usyk.

After seeing Usyk emerge victorious with the titles, they attempted to put on an undisputed title showdown with Tyson Fury at the start of this year, but this did not come to fruition.

Instead, Saudi Arabia staged Tommy Fury’s win over Jake Paul in February.

It’s known Skill Challenge Entertainment have ambitious plans to make both Fury vs Usyk and Joshua vs Deontay Wilder in December, potentially on the same night.

To help make this happen, they have now inked a deal to represent Usyk themselves.

Time will tell if that super heavyweight show comes to fruition, but for now Usyk must make a mandatory defence of his belts against Daniel Dubois.

This bout is planned for August 26 in Wroclaw, Poland.

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