Anthony Crolla picked up a big win on Saturday night’s Usyk-Bellew fight card in Manchester, with the former WBA lightweight titlist winning a 12-round unanimous decision over Daud Yordan to become the mandatory challenger for the WBA 135 pound belt the formidable Vasyl Lomachenko currently holds. So the good news for Crolla, 34-6-3(13) is he will get the opportunity to become a two-time champion – the bad news is, he will have to face the matrix that is Loma.
And promoter Eddie Hearn says he expects the WBA to order the fight and that it will then go to purse bids. Hearn, speaking with The Manchester Evening News, said he fully expects Crolla to have to travel to America for the fight, next April or May, and that Crolla will “make a fortune” with the fight.
“The WBA will call the mandatory after [Jose] Pedraza (who fights Loma next, on December 8th in a WBA/WBO title fight unification). We’ll be bidding with DAZN, and Top Rank will be bidding, so Anthony Crolla is going to make a fortune and he deserves it,” Hearn said. “Don’t get me wrong, it’s a complete disaster of a fight for any man in boxing and Crolla is right up against it. But he’s done everything else so why not go to New York or Vegas and fight for seven-figures? It won’t be in Manchester. We want it in America. So we will go to purse bids and let Crolla make all the money in the world.”
Crolla is a good fighter, experienced and always in great shape and willing to fight the very best. But with all due respect, if Crolla were able to upset pound-for-pound king Lomachenko, he would have pulled off arguably the biggest-ever win by any British boxer in history – a bigger upset even than the incredible night when Randy Turpin managed to defeat the immortal Sugar Ray Robinson.
Lomachenko must get past Pedraza first of course, but here too, Lomachenko is a massive favourite to win. Crolla is far from being alone when it comes to being a 135 pound fighter who would be up against everything in one huge way in a fight with the man known as “Hi Tech.” But Crolla will certainly be up for the challenge and he can be relied upon to give his all in any fight, one with the gifted southpaw from Ukraine included.
Crolla, now aged 31, has won three straight since losing back to back to the superb Jorge Linares.