Anthony Joshua, newly dethroned as world heavyweight boxing champion, is expected to go to the hospital to check for a suspected broken eye socket.
Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn, who made the announcement moments after losing to Ukraine’s Oleksandr Usyk on Saturday in London, also said his fighter was “devastated” by the loss.
He admitted, however, that Joshua’s side had no reservations about the outcome and the top fighter won the fight.
“Congratulations to Oleksandr Usyk. What a fighter. He put in a great performance and the best of them won, ”said Hearn.
“I got him pretty close in the eighth, then Usyk ran away with it.”
Usyk dethroned Joshua in his own backyard with a stunning display to earn an unanimous points decision in front of a sold-out crowd at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
The 34-year-old undisputed former world cruiserweight champion staged a masterclass to silence the vast majority of the 67,000 fans who gathered in the huge arena.
Usyk, giving the champion height, weight, and reach, proved too elusive for Joshua throughout an exciting contest and pulled off much sharper shots.
He finished with a flurry on lap 12 as he set off in search of a knockout.
Joshua remained standing but the decision was a formality as Usyk grabbed the WBA, WBO, IBF, and IBO belts with the three judges scoring him 117-112, 116-112, 115-113.
Former Olympic champion Usyk, who is only playing his third professional heavyweight fight, is following in the footsteps of his compatriots Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko.
The Klitschko brothers dominated the division for a decade from 2004 to 2015.
He is only the third world cruiserweight champion to increase weight and become the world heavyweight champion after Evander Holyfield and David Haye.
For Joshua, a second career loss was a blow and dashed hopes for a unification showdown with fellow British WBC titleholder Tyson Fury.
Even Joshua’s most diehard fans have had to admit that their man was educated by a skillful craftsman who rarely looked disheveled, even when he suffered a cut above his eye late.
Joshua gave little to the crowd to cheer and ran out of ideas against his left-handed opponent who had been in the lead throughout.
A sensational atmosphere greeted the fighters as they made the long march to the ring, with the crowd screaming and fireworks exploding in the sky.
But from the first bell, Joshua didn’t seem sure whether he was trying to overpower his opponent or send him off – failing miserably in both.
A nervous silence fell over the stadium in the opening laps as Usyk’s threat became too apparent.
Constantly on the move, he rocked Joshua in the third with a powerful left hand.
Usyk retained control in subsequent laps as Joshua failed to unleash his supposed top power and the Londoner again struggled in the seventh round as he was sent back by a big left hook.
A gash appeared above Usyk’s eye in the 10th round, but Joshua’s face showed signs of damage in battle.
Joshua needed a knockout to keep his belts but it was Usyk who came closest with a fierce attack at the end of the 12th that left the Briton tottering.
Even before the official result was announced, some Joshua fans were heading for the exits as Usyk supporters just got the party started.
Joshua then took to Twitter saying, “Stay positive even if the world is falling apart in front of you! London, I love you and I thank you every time!”