There is a good reason for all the attention Vasyl Lomachenko garners among boxing fans and writers. The two-time Olympic gold medalist from the Ukraine demonstrates a type of technical creativity rarely seen the history of boxing. As he has grown comfortable in the professional game, his style has begun to resemble violent ballet.
But he has unfairly sucked all the air out of the room in the super featherweight division. Little notice seems to be taken this week of Miguel Berchelt’s upcoming fight in Cancun with Ghana’s Maxwell Awuku.
At 26, the WBC 130-pound belt holder has compiled a record of 32-1 with 28 KOs. That lone loss came four years ago–a stunning, Round 1 TKO against hard-punching journeyman Luis Florez. Berchelt has long-since rebounded from the setback.
2017 was Berchelt’s breakout year. In January he knocked out Francisco Vargas in Round 11 of a bloody shootout to garner his WBC trinket. He July he defeated Japan’s Takashi Miura via one-sided decision.
Awuku is an obscure challenger for Berchelt, but that doesn’t mean he won’t prove to be a game opponent. His record is 44-3-1 and while he has not defeated anybody prominent, the boxing culture in Ghana is notoriously rough. You don’t fight your way to the top of it without being somebody special.
Two of those losses on his resume came early in his career–one of them to Liam Walsh. In 2015 he lost a close decision to Daud Yordan in Yordan’s native Indonesia.