Anthony Crolla faces Daud Yordan this Saturday in Manchester on the Usyk-Bellew bill in a WBA eliminator at 135 pounds, meaning that the winner will be in line for a shot at Vasiliy Lomachenko, the current WBA lightweight titleholder.
Crolla (33-6-3, 13 KO) insists he’s not looking past Yordan (38-3, 26 KO), but that he can’t help but envision the fight with Lomachenko (11-1, 9 KO):
“It’s a fight I cannot wait for, a final eliminator for a world title and is every bit as hard as a world title fight. I’ve put in the hard work, I feel better than ever, I just need to go out and perform. People have their opinions, but if I’m mandatory it puts me in a great position for the fight. He does what he wants to do but he has mentioned fighting in England. It’s a massive carrot.”
As for people having their opinions, one assumes he means that nobody in their right mind would give Crolla a reasonable shot to beat Lomachenko if they do meet, and he’s right, it would be hard to find anyone outside of Crolla’s immediate family and his hype squad that would give him a real shot at that upset.
Lomachenko is set to face WBO champion Jose Pedraza (25-1, 12 KO) on Dec. 8 in New York in a unification fight right now, so his sights are also elsewhere. But in 2019, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Lomachenko-Crolla if both win, as much as that might disappoint people who don’t see it as a competitive fight.