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Former Olympic gold medalist boxer joins Ukraine defense battalion

Vasiliy Lomachenko celebrates defending his WBA/WBO lightweight titles after knocking out Anthony Crolla in Los Angeles
Associated Press/Damian Dovarganes

Former Olympic boxer Vasiliy Lomachenko joined a territorial defense battalion in Ukraine amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The 34 four-year-old shared an image to this Facebook page showing him armed and donning military gear on Sunday.

Lomachenko, a two-time gold medal winner, was in Greece when the invasion began, according to ESPN, and his flight home was delayed on Friday after air traffic in the region started being grounded. He reportedly flew into Bucharest instead, and traveled through Romania on Saturday to reach his home outside of Odessa to be with his family.

“We are so proud of our boxers, our real champions in boxing and champions in this war,” Mykola Kovalchuk, president of WBC Ukraine, said, according to ESPN. “We are proud to be Ukrainians.”

ESPN noted that Lomachenko, a former three-division champion, is closing in on a fight in Australia on June 5 against undisputed lightweight champion George Kambosos.

His decision to join the defense battalion comes after Hall of Fame boxer Vitali Klitschko, the mayor of Kyiv, announced he was taking up arms to defend the city against the Russian invaders, the sports news outlet reported. The mayor’s brother, fellow Hall of Famer and former heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko, also enlisted in the Ukrainian army reserve earlier this month before the invasion.

Tags Boxers Russia Russian invasion of Ukraine Ukraine Vasiliy Lomachenko
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