The reigning Unified WBA, IBF, WBO Heavyweight World Champion, Oleksandr Usyk (20-0, 13 KOs), has recently inked a multiple-fight contract with Saudi Arabian promotional company, Skill Challenge Promotions (SCP). SCP, founded by His Highness Prince Khaled bin AbdulAziz in 2023, has enjoyed massive success following the hosting of some of the largest boxing events in Saudi Arabia.
Usyk is no stranger to the Kingdom, having defended his title against Anthony Joshua in a much-anticipated rematch in August 2022. The event, titled ‘Rage on the Red’ Sea, was co-hosted by Skill Challenge Entertainment and The Ministry of Sport.
SCP Chairman Prince Khaled expressed his excitement about working with a champion like Usyk, lauding his excellence both in and out of the ring. The aim of SCP, according to Prince Khaled, is to collaborate with multifaceted champions who share Usyk’s core values.
The recruitment of Usyk by SCP mirrors Cristiano Ronaldo’s signing with the Saudi Football League, indicating Saudi Arabia’s growing clout in global sports. This aligns perfectly with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s Vision 2030 national reform initiative.
Amer Abdallah, Director of Boxing Operations for the Promotion, commented on Prince Khaled’s mission to deliver top-quality fights for both fighters and fans alike, by maintaining collaborations with global promoters, management, and networks.
Speculations are rife about a December showdown between Usyk and WBC Heavyweight Champion Tyson Fury for a unification bout that would determine an Undisputed Heavyweight Champion. However, Abdallah stated that while such a match is highly desired by boxing fans, the focus is currently on Usyk’s defense against Daniel Dubois in August 2023.
At the Riyadh press announcement, Usyk expressed his delight at returning to Saudi Arabia and working with Prince Khaled. The champion emphasized his intention to claim the WBC Heavyweight Champion title, becoming The Undisputed Champion, while also hinting at his samurai-like dedication to his path.
Alex Krassyuk, Usyk’s Promoter and K2 founder, referred to this development as a new chapter in Usyk’s life and a historical moment. Usyk’s Manager, Egis Klimas, expressed his gratitude towards Prince Khaled and praised the much-needed influence of Skill Challenge Promotions in the boxing world.
Skill Challenge Entertainment, founded by Prince Khaled, debuted with the Joshua-Ruiz rematch in 2019, titled “Clash on the Dunes”. Post-pandemic, they hosted the Usyk-Joshua rematch, “Rage on the Red Sea”. Their latest global event, “The Truth” in February 2023, featuring stars like Jake Paul vs Tommy Fury and Badou Jack vs Illunga Makabu for the WBC Cruiserweight Title, became the largest hybrid boxing event ever.