Usyk outclasses Gassiev to make cruiserweight history
Oleksandr Usyk produced a tactical masterclass to beat Murat Gassiev and become the first man to hold all four cruiserweight titles at one time.
Usyk may have gone into Saturday's World Boxing Super Series final in Moscow with fewer professional fights to his name but he was far too good for the previously unbeaten Gassiev.
That was reflected on the judges' scorecards, one giving the Ukranian victory in every round at 120-108 and the other two scoring it 119-109.
Round by round Usyk jabbed and danced his way around the ring, leaving the younger man Gassiev battered, bruised and desperately seeking a knockout punch.
Fighting on home soil, Gassiev may have occupied the centre ground but was unable to use it to his advantage as Usyk controlled proceedings, the southpaw's left jab regularly penetrating his opponent's defence.
While Usyk regularly made contact with head shots, Gassiev was over-reliant on blows to the body that failed to slow down the impressive 31-year-old.
Eventually Gassiev came out punching but Usyk's combinations were a class above as he finished with a flourish by coolly picking off his opponent in the closing rounds.
The 24-year-old's chin held up admirably but the unanimous points decision was always going to go Usyk's way, the 2012 Olympic heavyweight champion securing the Muhammad Ali Trophy in style.
Usyk has previously talked about stepping up to heavyweight to eventually challenge Anthony Joshua, and after unifying the cruiserweight division he could quickly put himself of the undefeated Briton's radar.