World Boxing Organisation (WBO) junior lightweight champion Vasyl Lomachenko has confirmed that he would love to face boxing legend Manny Pacquiao, but only in the 135-pound weight category. The Ukrainian was in action recently when he ended Nicholas Walters' unbeaten streak by defeating him in round seven during their junior lightweight title bout on 26 November at Las Vegas.
Boxing promoter Bob Arum who represents Lomachenko claimed that a match-up between the duo is a realistic possibility, however, the only spanner could be the category in which they would agree to fight in, as Lomachenko fights in lightweight and featherweight, while the Filipino is the current WBO welterweight champion.
"Probably 135 (would be) the max because right now I came in the ring [Saturday night] at 136 pounds. I very much respect Manny Pacquiao. I like Manny Pacquiao. And I would be very proud if somebody would give me the opportunity, to fight Manny Pacquiao," said Lomachenko as quoted by Boxing Scene.
Whether the Pac Man would be interested in a fight with the Ukrainian remains to be seen, but according to reports the Filipino is interested in a money-spinning rematch with legendary retired boxer Floyd Mayweather. The 37-year-old recently revealed that there is a possibility of the bout taking place and claimed that if "fans want it [the fight], then why not".
While promoter Arum understands that a fight with Mayweather is what interests Pacquiao the most – but since the American retired and is seemingly not interested in a rematch – a bout with Lomachenko could be the next best option for Pacquiao's camp.
"The Manny fight would be a possibility for the second half of 2017. That's a possibility," Arum said.
Pacquiao, who made a successful comeback from retirement to beat Jessie Vargas via a unanimous 114-113, 118-109 and 118-109 decision, is yet to confirm if he is interested in facing the Ukrainian.