In beating Adrian Young with an impressive performance back in March, Hull hero Luke Campbell earned the chance to win some serious belts. The Olympic gold medalist fancies getting his gloves on some titles, but there’s someone standing in his way… Vasyl Lomachenko.
Lomachenko is currently a unified lightweight world champion, holding the WBA (Super), WBO and The Ring magazine titles. The Ukrainian fighter is also, annoyingly for Campbell, perhaps the best boxer plying his trade today. ESPN, the Boxing Writers Association of America, the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board and The Ring put him as the single best pound for pound fighter in the world.
The guy is good.
The tale of the tape
|Vasyl Lomachenko||🥊||Luke Campbell|
|Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, Ukraine||Hometown||Hull, UK|
|February 17th, 1988||Date of Birth||September 27th, 1987|
When’s it on? And where?
Luke Campbell’s last fight may have been in the States, but for his shot at belts, he’s fighting in his home nation. The action will be taking place on the night of Saturday 31st August from The O2 Arena in London. The bill kicks off at around 6pm, but the main event should see ring walks around 10pm.
What they’re saying
— BoxingScene.com (@boxingscene) August 19, 2019
Luke Campbell: “I’m fighting the elite of the elite. They all get beat in the end, don’t they? Sooner or later. I believe I will beat him. I’m confident in the 19 years that I’ve put into this sport, always being disciplined. Timing is everything.”
“I’m the challenger, he’s the champion. Obviously I respect everything he has done and achieved, but I also know that every champion was once a challenger and I’ll be ready to give everyone a great fight on August 31st. My carer is going from strength to strength. It took me a while to get settled in the pro game, now I feel like I’m finally settled. I’m in a great place. Both of us are in our prime and this, for me, is perfect timing.”
Vasyl Lomachenko: ““He is tall, he has a big reach, he is a smart boxer and has a high boxing IQ. He also has lots of amateur experience so maybe for me it will be a big challenge. I never think about being unbeatable, I just do my job and train hard. When I come into the ring, I believe I will win.”
What the experts are saying
Campbell’s trainer Shane McGuigan: “Luke is not going to do what Salido did – march him down and use his weight and size because Luke doesn’t have that weight and size. Luke is not a come-forward pressure fighter. We have to take it out of the judges’ hands. When we win rounds we have to win them with a big margin.”
“We have to dent him with power, and Luke definitely has the power to dent him. How do you negate his speed, ability and technical prowess? We have the size advantage, the power advantage. No, we’re not as quick or agile but we can take that away with range and timing. I am fully confident we have the ability to beat him and even knock him out.”
George Groves: “What an opportunity for Luke Campbell to get in there and really show what he’s all about. This week Shane said to me, ‘Lukes’ going to beat Lomachenko’ and I replied, ‘I know’. We know he’s got it all to do and he’s a big underdog but he’s going to go out there and do the job, do what he was put on this planet to do.
“He’s one of the best fighters we’ve produced. I know this first hand by training alongside him. He is going from strength to strength and really improving. The best is yet to come, he’s got the opportunity to fight the pound-for-pound number one and if anyone can beat him, it is Luke Campbell. He’s not here to make up the numbers and to give the British fans the opportunity to see a great fighter. I’m so excited to see my friend become World Champion, this is a huge occasion and a must see fight.”
“He’s got that champion material, there’s not an ounce of self doubt inside him and he’s a born champion. Luke’s had to face frustration where you feel like you have to work harder so it is going to be that bit sweeter on the night. On paper he’s our best amateur fighter of all time and now it is his time to do the same in the pro ranks.”
Lomachenko is an overwhelming favourite for the fight. You can only get him at a best priced 1/16 to win here. With the Yorkshireman a pretty lengthy 9/1. The draw, as ever, is at 25s.
It’s 9/4 for the fight to go the distance and just 1/3 for it to be stopped by a KO or TKO.
See above for round betting.
How we think it’ll go
— WAR MACHINE (@Frisco_dj) August 21, 2019
Luke Campbell is a fine boxer. He’ll have the size advantage and be on home soil. But like Tony Bellew says – and many other boxing pundits and experts agree – the Ukrainian is, pound for pound, the very best boxer in the world right now. Campbell can get at him and cause him problems, though. This could well be Lomachenko’s hardest test to date… But we anticipate he’ll come through it unscathed.
Vasyl Lomachenko to win by a unanimous points decision.
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