44-year-old Wladimir Klitschko today

Wladimir Klitschko (Photo: PuzzlePix Photo Agency)

Wladimir Klitschko was born on March 25, 1976 in the Soviet Union in what is now Kazakhstan, where his Ukrainian-born father served as a soldier.

He had a very good career as an amateur. In 1993 he was European junior champion, in 1994 he was a silver medalist in the junior world championship, in 1995 he was a gold medalist in the heavyweight world championship. In 1996 he was a silver medalist in the European Championship in super heavyweight. Then in 1996 he was an Olympic super heavyweight champion.

He started his professional career after the Atlanta Olympics. First at Universum Box Promotion in Hamburg. And in 2004, he and his brother and Tom Loeffler, who started their own promotional agency, K2 Promotions, have come under control. By this time, Emanuel Steward had prepared him for the fights.

On October 14, 2000, he defeated the American Chris Byrd to become the WBO heavyweight world champion. He defended his title five times, but lost it on March 8, 2003 against Corrie Sanders of South Africa. Then, on April 10, 2004, he once again fought for the then-vacant WBO World Championship title, but missed the opportunity as his opponent, Lamon Brewster, won by TKO.

Then on April 22, 2006, he defeated Chris Byrd again to win the IBF / IBO World Championship title. In 2008, he also won the WBO World Championship title. He defended all three titles on several occasions and in 2011 defeated David Haye to become the WBA (Super) belt, so he owned three belts of the four big organizations. The fourth belt (WBC) is owned by his brother Vitali Klitschko. They promised their mother that they would never fight each other, they never unified the titles.

He kept his belts until November 28, 2015, when he lost to Tyson Fury in decision, losing his World Championship titles and unbeaten for more than 10 years. Although there was a rematch against Fury, it was not due to the British boxer. In  2017, he tried to be the world champion again against Anthony Joshua, but lost in London on April 29th. It was his last professional match.

Since then, sometimes he himself has spoken about a comeback. Last year, for example, he said he would return to break George Foreman’s record and become the oldest heavyweight world champion ever. Foreman was 45, 9 months and 26 days old when he defeated Michael Moorer on November 5, 1994. In order to break this record, you need to regain your world title in February 2022 at the earliest.

During his 20-year career as a pro, he has won 64 of his 69 fights (53 KOs) and has lost five. He has been Intercontinental Champion four times (WBC, WBA, WBC, WBA) and has also won NABF and NABO North American Championship titles each. He once earned the European Championship title (EBU), combined with the first WBA Intercontinental title. There were two World Championships (WBO, WBA / IBF / WBO / IBO / RING).