Lomachenko makes maiden defence against dangerous challenger ‘Axe Man’ Walters
Lee Gormley | 27 November 2016
Vasyl Lomachenko v Nicholas Walters
- WBO super-featherweight title fight
- Sunday, November 27th
- Scheduled for: 04:30 GMT
- Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Nevada
- Live on BoxNation
Lomachenko v Walters tips for fight night
After being crowned a two-weight world champion in only his seventh professional bout, Vasyl Lomachenko will make the first defence of his WBO super-featherweight strap against dangerous Jamaican challenger Nicholas Walters this weekend.
At the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas in the early hours of Sunday morning, Lomachenko (6-1, 4 KOs) will look to continue his rampant rise through the paid ranks against former featherweight titlist Walters (26-0-1, 21 KOs).
The unbeaten challenger held his former WBA belt from 2012 until June last year, when he was stripped of the strap for not making weight before his clash against Miguel Marriaga, despite unanimously outpointing his opponent.
Following the recent blockbuster showdown between Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev in Las Vegas, Sin City will host yet another high-profile bout this weekend, with Lomachenko entering as favourite and 15/8 with Coral to stop Walters.
Champion Lomachenko ready for Walters test
Rising Ukrainian star Lomachenko outlined intentions of fighting for a world title on his pro debut but had to wait until his second outing to do so, ultimately losing a questionable decision to gritty veteran Orlando Salido.
Although, that did not hinder a fighter that is widely regarded as the best amateur to have entered the ring, as the now 28-year-old went on to claim the WBO featherweight title by overcoming Gary Russell Jr in 2014.
‘Hi-Tech’ then successfully defended that strap three times before halting Roman Martinez inside five rounds to be crowned a world champion at 130lbs as well and he is ready for his toughest test yet this weekend.
“This fight all depends on me and It will be up to me as to whether this fight goes the distance or finishes early,” stated Lomachenko, who is odds-on 4/5 for a points victory.
“I always do what I say I will do and If I didn’t people would lose respect for me. I will do that again and maintain their respect.”
Arum hails Lomachenko as better than Ali
With the slick southpaw having added two division world titles to his double Olympic Gold success in 2008 and 2012, as well as two World Amateur Championships triumphs, his Top Rank promoter Bob Arum has reaped huge praise ahead of his 2000th career show.
“Vasyl Lomachenko is technically the best fighter that I have seen since the early Muhammad Ali,” declared Arum, who has also recently outlined a desired meeting with Manny Pacquiao for Lomachenko.
“There is nobody that I have seen, and there have been a lot of great technical fighters that I have seen – Alexis Arguello was one, Floyd Mayweather certainly, Manny Pacquiao – but there has been nobody with the skills that Vasyl Lomachenko has.”
In order to justify the hype and transfer the evident talent into further success, though, the Ukrainian must deal with the threat of dangerous knockout artist Walters this weekend. The latter ‘Axe Man’ is a 4/1 outsider to prevail but is confident in his own power and ability.
“I try best to not leave it to judges…”
“This is a great opportunity to show the world my talent and I’m not planning on going the distance, I’ve trained to get him out of the ring before the final bell,” stated the hard-hitting Jamaican.
“If the fight goes the distance, you leave it up to the judges and sometimes the judges can see it differently to the rest of the world, but it’s their opinion that counts – I try best to not leave it to judges.
“The judges are there to judge, my job is to fight, whatever decision they come up with, we live with it. I have twelve rounds to try and take it out of their hands.”
Walters endured a disappointing draw last time out against Jason Sosa but that will only fire him up more to get the job done early against Lomachenko, and he is 11/2 to stop the Ukrainian to become a two-weight world titlist.
Though all eyes will be on Lomachenko and how he deals with the potentially devastating threat posed by Walters in what is set to be another anticipated super-fight to take place in Las Vegas this weekend.
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