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Vitali Klitschko Bows Out of the Ring and Enters Ukrainian Politics

Though few realize it, one of the most dominant heavyweight champions in boxing history is on the cusp of retirement. When Vitali Klitschko (45-2, 41 knockouts) made his professional boxing debut in 1996, the six-foot-seven son of a Soviet Air Force colonel was one of a new generation of super-size heavyweights. Now 17 years and 46 bouts later, the WBC heavyweight king is near the end of his reign. As Klitschko recently put it, “Sports have always been in my heart, but it is impossible to continue boxing into old age. Now I’m 41 years old and my professional boxing career is coming to an end.”

Klitschko breaks every rule in the book of boxing technique. Shuffling around the ring he has the footwork of a tyrannosaurus. He holds his left arm at his side and paws with it to set up whacks from the big stick of his right. But Klitschko is no Primo Carnera—the first giant heavyweight champion and an ersatz fighter who was set up by the mob...


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