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Joshua knocks out Klitschko to unify heavyweight title
May 25 2017, 08:50 | Perry Erickson
The British-Nigerian boxer emerged victorious from a keenly fought contest to retain his IBF world heavyweight title and add the vacant WBA heavyweight title with tonight's win.
In the aftermath of the sensational fight, Klitschko confirmed the clause in the contract and is eager to try for the IBF and WBA "super" title.
The epic bout saw the world and his wife, from film stars to other top athletes, chip in with their congratulations.
Joshua was quick to pay tribute to Klitschko after both men had been on the canvas during a fight of the year contender.
"Challenge accepted", Fury wrote. We will give the world the biggest fight in a 500 years. "It's too early; I actually feel pretty good, considering I lost".
"Sugar Ray Leonard: all the skill, ability he had, said there are times when you have to show character and go to the trenches".
Anthony Joshua def. Wladimir Klitschko by TKO (referee stoppage). I enjoy fighting, I love fighting. The Hollywood legend posted a photo from his ringside seat, saying it was "the most exciting fight he ever was seen". Congrats @anthonyfjoshua on the win & @Klitschko on wonderful battle.
Check out Newsround's quick guide to Britain's heavyweight boxing champion. "Both fighters gave their best".
Going into the bout with the veteran Ukranian and former heavyweight champion, Joshua faced the greatest challenge of his career.
Previous concerns about his durability proved unfounded as he also demonstrated exceptional heart and resilience to avoid defeat after swallowing that Klitschko right hand and to fight on into the 11th round, where a devastating uppercut set up victory. If it is, he's had an incredible career and can go out with his head held high after a great performance against a much younger man.
After Klitschko spoke to the crowd, and received a warm reception for his brilliant effort in the ring, the Sky Sports interviewer asked to have a word with Hearn. He had come through his stiffest test to date, while Klitschko had answered questions of his own, showing he remains competitive at world level, even at 41.
"Well done Anthony Joshua".
"It was nearly impossible what he did - but he did".
He said: "This is where I started so I also donated some of my memorabilia in the hope that, when the children see it, it will inspire them to dream big".
"We've had a real treat this evening - it's been unbelievable".
The former WBC cruiserweight champion's unexpected defeat of David Haye has given him far more appeal in the heavyweight division than any would have predicted.