In a world where unending possibilities seem to be the only permanent thing, the former Ukranian professional heavyweight boxer turned politician, Vitali Klitschko – aka Dr. Ironfist lends credence to the given. He first came in contact with politics in 2005 while still active in the ring and ultimately retired from the ring in 2013. He is a former leader of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc and a past member of the Ukrainian Parliament. Klitschko currently serves as the Mayor of Kiev.
He is rated amongst the greatest heavyweight fighters of all time, known for having an exceptional ring dominance. The three-time world heavyweight champion has contested in a record of 15 title bouts and is the only heavyweight boxer to have reigned as world champion in three different decades. He also has an undefeated record which adds to his resume as the second-longest-reigning WBC heavyweight champion of all time. In 2016, he was named The Eternal World Heavyweight Champion by the WBC.
Vitali Klitschko Bio & Age
Born Vitali Volodymyrovych Klitschko on 19 July 1971, he is one of the two children begat by his parents, a father who was an Airforce major general for the Soviet and a mother who was a homemaker. His birthplace was a city known as Belovodskoye, Kirghiz SSR but now called Kyrgyzstan.
Vitali attended Pereiaslav-Khmelnytsky Pedagogical Institute from where he proceeded to Taras Shevchenko National University. He also attended the National University of Physical Education and Sport of Ukraine where he received his doctorate degree in sports science.
He first ventured into the boxing arena in the 1990s and dominated as an undefeated champion in no time, along with his younger brother. Klitschko recorded 34–2 with 22 knockouts as an amateur kickboxer and was also a two-time kickboxing world champion. Moreover, he won the championships four times as a professional. In 1995, he won the super heavyweight gold medal at the World Military Championships in Ariccia, Italy and reeled off an amateur boxing record of 195 wins with only 15 losses.
Klitschko turned professional in 1996 and went on to win his first 24 fights via knockout. He also put pen to paper in a deal with the German athlete-promotion company Universum alongside his brother, who also turned pro the same year after a gold medal victory in the Atlanta Olympic. In tune with the expectations of fans, he won his 25th fight against UK boxer, Herbie Hide, earning the WBO Heavyweight title which he successfully defended twice before suffering his first defeat to American Chris Byrd in April 2000.
Although recorded as his first defeat, Vitali Klitschko actually threw in the towel after suffering a serious shoulder injury in the ninth round. However, he made up for the loss by recording five victories in a row, in turn, earning a shot at WBC Heavyweight Champion Lennox Lewis, although Lewis won by technical knockout. He faced Corrie Sanders in a fight where he won the WBC and The Ring heavyweight championship titles vacated by Lewis upon his retirement in 2004, and then Danny Williams. In November 2005, Vitali retired from professional boxing, vacating his WBC title. The “champion emeritus” status was conferred on him with the assurance that if and when he decided to return, he would become the mandatory challenger.
He returned in 2008 and reclaimed his title by fighting the reigning champion, Nigerian boxer Samuel Peters in October at O2 World, Berlin. With the victory, he joined the few men to ever hold a version of the World Heavyweight Championship three times—WBO (1999–2000), WBC (2004–2005) and WBC (2008–2012). He went on to face many other significant fighters of his era and successfully defended his title for 9 consecutive times.
He defended his title at 40, joining George Foreman as the only heavyweight boxers in history to defend a world title after turning 40. Vitali Klitschko eventually called time on his career in December 2013 and turned fully to politics. He was announced champion emeritus upon his retirement. Klitschko put up a record of 45 wins from 47 fights, 41 of which were by knockout. The only 2 losses in his career were through a shoulder injury and a deep cut above his eye and in both cases, it was recorded as stoppages rather than outright knockouts and he was also leading on the judges’ scorecards.
Beginning from 2004, he became a player in the Ukranian political sphere, first as a supporter of the candidacy of Viktor Yushchenko along with his brother. Then in 2006, he placed second in the Kiev mayoral race and founded the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform (UDAR) in 2010. Two years later, he was elected into the parliament as the party’s flag bearer. He now serves as Mayor of Kiev after winning the election on May 25, 2014, and was reelected on November 15, 2015, under the Petro Poroshenko Bloc after his party merged into the former. Moreover, he served as the leader of the Bloc and has been the head of the Kiev City State Administration since June 2014.
What Is His Net Worth?
Vitali Klitschko is not just a successful boxer only by records and fight victories, his net worth also reflects the fact. His fortune is estimated at $80 million, ranking him among the world’s richest boxers.
Facts About His Brother and Wife
Klitschko’s younger brother, Wladimir Klitschko is also a famous boxer. He held the WBC, WBO, IBF, and WBA heavyweight titles with a record of 64-win out of 69 fights, 53 of which were by knockout. The brothers dominated heavyweight boxing for almost a decade (2006-2015), a period dubbed the Klitschko Era of the division.
Vitali Klitschko is married to former athlete and model Natalia Egorova. They have been together as husband and wife since 1996 and share three children; Yegor-Daniel, Elizabeth-Victoria, and Max.
What Is Vitali Klitschko’s Height?
Standing at 2.01 meters (6 feet 7 inches), Klitschko weighs 112 kg which is 247 in pounds. He takes on an orthodox stance and has a reach that measures 203 cm (80 inches), as well as possesses a highly durable chin.