A few months ago - IBF, IBO, WBA, WBO heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk returned home to Ukraine to assist the local military with their resistance against the ongoing invasion by neighboring country Russia.
He was given a special exemption from military duty to start training camp for the upcoming rematch with Anthony Joshua.
Last September, Usyk outboxed Joshua over twelve rounds to capture the unified heavyweight crown at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London.
The details of the rematch were officially announced earlier this week, and it takes place on August 20 in Saudi Arabia.
The unbeaten boxer dismissed any notion that the ongoing war with Russia has given him extra motivation to come out on top in the fight.
"My friends and people close to me, they have died in the war. When so many people are suffering I don't have any idea how it can influence anything positively. I was there for one month and I saw with my own eyes what happened there... the rockets flying and fighter jets flying. It's horrible," Usyk said.
Joshua, who activated a rematch clause to secure an immediate second clash with Usyk, praised the country of Ukraine. The British star is friends with Ukraine's Wladimir Klitschko, who is currently assisting his countrymen with their resistance.
"Big up to Usyk, the Klitschko brothers, everyone in Ukraine. I know it's been tough, but tough times don't last. Keep your heads up. The world's watching, the world's in support. Anyone that's going through tough times we're always with them so especially the Ukrainian people right now," Joshua said.