Home Boxing News How many more times can Vasiliy Lomachenko go to the well?

How many more times can Vasiliy Lomachenko go to the well?

Vasiliy Lomachenko and George Kambosos Jr. Photo credit: Getty Images

Is age just a number?

That is one of the big questions going in to the vacant IBF lightweight title fight between ex-champs Vasiliy Lomachenko 17-3 (11) and George Kambosos Jr 21-2 (10) at the RAC Arena in Perth, Australia on Sunday afternoon local time.

At 36 and after an astonishing amateur career of round 400-odd fights that delivered two Olympic gold medals and a successful pro career that has seen him claim world titles in three separate weight classes, Ukrainian southpaw Lomachenko has himself admitted that he cannot go on boxing indefinitely.

“If you are talking about ages in boxing, and weight classes, I agree… I’m old man,” Lomachenko said this week. “But heavyweight? At 36 a lot of heavyweights can start at this age.

“But my career is almost done, of course. How many years it’s going to be? One, two, three, that’s it. But I think I still have a little bit of power.”

How much road he has left is open for debate.

Lou DiBella, who promotes 30-year-old Australian Kambosos, admits as much.

“It’s a legitimate question,” DiBella said to Fox Sports Australia. “As an amateur, Loma fought an ungodly number of fights. Almost 400, which is insane. The guy has been fighting his whole life. And he’s probably a little bit tired.

“The other thing is, he’s also struggling and clawing to get back to the top. So coming to Australia to fight George, is he at his most motivated? Has he prepared his best?

“I don’t know. But we’re going to find out.”

DiBella continued: “Any time a fighter hits his late thirties, the question starts being asked ‘when does he get old?’. Obviously if he’s got old before this fight it will be a great benefit to George, so we’ll see Sunday.

“I still think Lomachenko is a great fighter, but I don’t think he’s in the middle of his prime. He’s late in his career… and you’re never better late in your career.

“You might be smarter, but not better. So I do believe George is getting him at a good time.

“But it doesn’t mean George wins.”

If Kambosos does manage to defeat Lomachenko, DiBella says he he could pair him with WBO junior welterweight champion Teofimo Lopez 20-1 (13) in a rematch of their 2021 encounter that Kambosos won by split decision to claim the WBA, WBO, IBF and Ring Magazine lightweight titles.

“If George performs there is always the Lopez fight because he kicked Teofimo’s rear end,” DiBella said. “So that fight will always be there as long as George still looks like a world class fighter.

“And I have no reason to believe he won’t because George is a world class fighter and I know he’s going to give a great performance Sunday.

“The question is, will it be enough to beat Lomachenko.”