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Invincible Vasiliy Lomachenko shows why he is the best world’s best fighter | Kevin Mitchell

Ukrainian lightweight produced a display of punching perfection in his demolition of Manchester’s Anthony Crolla to underline his credentials to wear the pound-for-pound crown

Vasiliy Lomachenko is making a rock-solid case to be regarded as the best boxer in the world, the pound-for-pound crown that can start a thousand arguments. There would be little or no dissent, however, from Anthony Crolla, whom the peerless Ukrainian destroyed inside four rounds in Los Angeles on Friday night and who is now seriously considering retirement. “He’s as good as what they say, a fantastic fighter,” the 32-year-old Mancunian said through swollen lips.

The biggest blow Crolla has taken in his life was a concrete slab thrown at the side of his head by an intruder he chased from a neighbour’s back garden in 2014. “You’ll never box again,” his doctor said that Christmas. He did – and Friday’s fight was the ninth since that night. Was it his last? The left hook in round four, followed by a right to the temple that pitched him face first on to the canvas, looked very much like the full stop to a slow-burning career over 13 years in which the universally admired Mancunian won 34 of 44 bouts, a world title and made some decent money.

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