Wladimir Klitschko and Vitali Klitschko, the two boxing brothers from Ukraine ruled the heavyweight division for decades, yet as the sport is, we never saw them fighting together. However, circumstances have now brought them to fight together, but not in the squared circle- on the frontier, as the brothers are taking up arms for their nation’s army against the ongoing Russian military operation in Ukraine.
Right now, we have to take weapons and fight: Vitali Klitschko
Turn back the time to a decade into the past, Wladimir Klitschko and Vitali Klitschko reigned as the world heavyweight champions. While Wladimir, the younger sibling was the unified WBA (Super), IBF, WBO and IBO champion, Vitali reigned as the WBC titleholder from 2008 all the way until his retirement five years later. Even during their careers, the two Klitschko brothers were well known for their patriotism, as they would proudly don the blue and yellow on their shoulders.
After hanging up his globes, Vitali switched to politics and eventually became the Mayor of Kiyv, the capital of Ukraine. Wladimir, on the other hand, remained uninvolved in politics, but enrolled into the Ukrainian military last month, fearing a possible offensive from their neighbours. Now in the heels of Russian President Vladimir Putin launching a military operation in Eastern Ukraine, Vitali is also intending to join the forces.
“It’s a very difficult situation. We stand in front of one of the biggest and strongest armies in the world,” Vitali told Good Morning Britain, “But, we have to defend our families, our country, our cities. We don’t have another choice… Ukraine was always a peaceful country, peaceful people. But right now, we have to take weapons and fight.”
“It’s already a bloody war. There are already dead Ukrainians. We don’t have exact numbers but we know, many many examples right now. I don’t have another choice [to not take up arms], I have to do that. I would fight,” the mayor added. [H/T BJPenn.com]
- Former heavyweight world champions Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko have decided to take up arms with Ukraine’s military against the ongoing Russian military operation