Unified Light-Heavyweight ruler Andre Ward has revealed that he is retiring from boxing.

On a statement on his website, he said: "I want to be clear – I am leaving because my body can no longer put up with the rigors of the sport and therefore my desire to fight is no longer there.

"As I walk away from the sport of boxing today, I leave at the top of your glorious mountain, which was always my vision and my dream. I did it. We did it," he added.

After winning a gold medal at the 2004 Olympics, Ward became Super-Middleweight World Champion five years later and went on to dominate the weight class before moving up to Light-Heavyweight.

Ward defeated Sergey Kovalev last November to become a two-weight World Champion and then stopped the Russian in a rematch earlier this year.

The American's retirement means the WBA, WBO and IBF belts will become vacant, leaving other contenders scrambling in the red-hot division.

Adonis Stevenson is currently the WBC Champion, but the likes of Kovalev, Sullivan Barrera, Oleksandr Gvozdyk and Eleider Alvarez will fancy their chances of seizing the opportunity to win a belt.

13-0 Londoner Anthony Yarde is ranked at number seven with the WBO and recently picked up the WBO Inter-Continental bauble to add to his European strap. His team will be watching developments with a close eye in the coming months.