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Biggest Boxing Upsets in Recent Years

Boxing is a sport that gets its fair share of upsets, as one punch can rock a fighter, no matter how good they are.

Here is a look at some of the biggest shocks in recent years inside the ring.

Ruiz Jr Stopping Joshua – June 2019

The heavyweight division often throws up more surprise results than any other division in boxing. One of the biggest in history came in June 2019 when Andy Ruiz Jr inflicted the first defeat of Anthony Joshua’s professional career.

Ruiz Jr stopped the British boxer in the seventh round to claim the WBA, IBF and WBO world titles. Joshua was sent to the floor on four occasions in that fight. It was a terrible night for the former Olympic champion.

Joshua did avenge the defeat to Ruiz Jr in a rematch. He will be hoping to do the same against Oleksandr Usyk. He is the underdog in the boxing odds at 13/8 to reverse his recent loss to the Ukrainian.

In the bet on Joshua v Usyk odds, the defending champion is the odds-on favourite at 1/2 to repeat his victory from last September. The former world champion faces the biggest challenge of his career, as Usyk dominated the majority of the 12 rounds in that contest.

Dmitry Bivol Beating Canelo – May 2022

Although Dmitry Bivol went into his fight with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez as the WBA (Super) light-heavyweight champion, not many people predicted he would inflict the first defeat on the Mexican since September 2013.

Bivol was a big outsider in the betting, as Canelo was not only the number one pound-for-pound boxer in the sport, but he had also been dominant in the ring since losing to Floyd Mayweather Jr nine years ago.

The 31-year-old now has a professional record of 31-0. His victory over Canelo gives him a great platform to push up the pound-for-pound list himself. He has shown he could be one of the most successful boxers in the sport today.

Canelo will return to the ring in September where he will meet rival Gennady Golovkin in a third fight. The pair drew their first contest in 2017. Twelve months later Alvarez prevailed on points. It is the undisputed super middleweight champion who is the favourite to defend his titles and get back to winning ways in the third instalment of the trilogy.

Tony Harrison Late Stoppage Against Charlo – December 2018

Light-middleweight boxer Tony Harrison picked a controversial win over Jermell Charlo in December 2018 in New York. Most pundits felt Charlo had done more than enough to defend his title, but the judges saw it otherwise, scoring it in favour of the challenger.

The defeat remains the only loss on Charlo’s professional record. He took up his option of a rematch with Harrison 12 months later, where he prevailed in the 11th round courtesy of a TKO.

Charlo reacted well to his defeat to his fellow American compatriot. He has since gone on to claim the WBA (Super) and IBF belts in his division. Wins have come over Jeison Rosario and Brian Castano, pushing him up to the number one spot in the rankings at 154lbs.

There are some big fights scheduled for the rest of 2022 and the above three results give the underdogs in the bouts hope that they too can spring a surprise.