Ukrainian lightweight boxing star Vasyl Lomachenko has put his hand up to fight Australia’s shock world champion George Kambosos Jr – and says he’s willing to fly to Australia to make it happen.
Lomachenko, also known as Vasiliy, is a two-time Olympic gold medallist and former world champion in three weight classes – featherweight, junior lightweight and lightweight – who delivered a masterclass performance to put his name firmly in contention to fight Kambosos.
The Australian responded by praising Lomachenko’s performance and declaring he was ‘in the equation’ to fight for the WBA, IBF, WBO, and Ring Magazine lightweight belts.
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Lomachenko outclassed another former lightweight titleholder Richard Commey in Madison Square Garden in a convincing victory that somehow went the full twelve rounds, despite Lomachenko begging his rival’s corner to stop the fight after a seventh-round knockdown.
In front of 8,555 fans, the 33-year-old sent his Ghanaian opponent crashing to the canvas with a brutal hook in the seventh, having cruised to a big points lead early in the fight thanks to his incredible speed and footwork.
Twice he yelled at Commey’s corner to end the fight there and then, but they refused and Commey made it to the final bell despite copping a battering in the closing stages of the fight – including 36 punches in the seventh round alone.
The scorecards finished a resounding 117-110, 119-108 and 119-108.
Lomachenko, now 16-2 with 11 Kos, declared: “I saw his situation and it was very hard for him. That’s why I said ‘Hey, stop the fight.’
“He’s a true warrior. He has a warrior heart. So we continued and we showed the people 12 great rounds.”
Commey’s corner defended their decision, with trainer Andre Rozier saying: “Richard is a warrior. Vasiliy is a great champion. When he signalled to stop it. For me to take his (Commey’s) pride and his energy and his diligence away would have been a horrible thing to do.
“I told Richard to get up and let’s get it together. Try not to make any mistakes and keep working. And as you see he did go the entire 12 rounds and he fought his heart out.”
Lomachenko called out Australia’s Kambosos after the victory, saying: “I need this chance. And if God gives me this chance I’ll take it … I will go anywhere I need to go to fight him.”
Kambosos beat the previously undefeated Teófimo López last month in a stunning upset to claim the WBA, IBF, WBO, and Ring Magazine lightweight titles. Lopez had previously beaten Lomachenko last year in a convincing points defeat.
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But Kambosos declared this weekend’s resounding victory put the Ukrainian ‘in the equation’ for his world title defence.
The Australian tweeted: “Great boxing display by Loma which puts him in the equation with Haney, Tank & Ryan, even after his LOSS against Teofimo.
“Respect to Commey, your a warrior and tough as nails. Looking forward to fighting one of these fellow warriors in 2022 down under. regards the EMPEROR.”
The other boxers named by Kambosos were American Devin Haney, the WBC lightweight world champion. Tank refers to Gervonta Davis, who this week vacated his WBA super-lightweight title to set up a potential battle down under. Ryan Garcia was another who immediately called out Kambosos following the Aussie’s shock world title win.