Lightweight contender Anthony ‘Million Dollar’ Crolla 34-6-3 (13) has taken his training to a new level ahead of his clash with WBA and WBO champion Vasyl Lomachenko 12-1 (9) at the Staples Center in Los Angeles this Friday night.
“It’s been more intense, and we’ve tried to train ourselves mentally for how tough it could get in there,” Crolla said in an interview with RingTV.com.
“Lomachenko has the habit of making opponents quit so we’ve been training to deal with frustration, if that makes sense. He frustrates the life out of opponents and that’s not just because of the beating he gives them, it’s because they’re having zero success.
“Physically we’re prepared, but I always train hard. I’ve been smart, but I also believe that I’ve trained harder than ever.
“I’ve pushed myself to the limit, but that’s the way it should be. I’m fighting one of the best fighters on the planet. My life has just been gym, motorways, gym, motorways, gym. My life has just been boxing and I’ve seen very little of my family. That’s the sacrifice you’ve got to make, you have to prepare differently for a fight of this magnitude.”
The 32-year-old Manchester veteran praised the southpaw champion for his balance and poise.
“He’s so well-balanced, and when he sees the opening he’ll pounce,” continued Crolla. “You see it in the Rocky Martinez knockout; he’s all around him and then bang, bang – uppercut, right hook. That was a brutal knockout. Paulie Malignaggi has got it bang on there. People do talk about the footwork, but it’s how well-balanced he stays when he’s moving around the opponent and looking for his angles.”
Crolla advised people writing him off to check his resume before predicting a winner for this fight.
“I’ve been at world-level for a very long time,” he said. “I’ve been in The Ring top 10, which I’m super-proud of, for a number of years. I’ve not been handed this shot, I’ve not been randomly picked or won a raffle.
“People seem to forget my first fight with (Jorge) Linares because he beat me well in the rematch. The right man won in the first fight, but there wasn’t loads in it. I boxed Ricky (Burns), and look what he’s achieved. I fought Daud Yordan, a tough old fight, and he’d been in the (WBA lightweight) top 10 for years too.”