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Lomachenko finds peace, focus in California training

OXNARD, Calif. — Vasyl Lomachenko awakes to California sunshine in his large, sparsely furnished suburban house. He commutes to his boxing gym in a late-model white SUV, cruising past fragrant acres of strawberries, lemons and celery in Ventura County’s fertile farmland.

“It’s always very good weather, and it gives you good emotions,” Lomachenko said. “It’s very comfortable for me. Always the sun is shining. For a sportsman like me, it’s very important. After hard work, you can rest and relax. Everything is cool with the green trees and the palms. Right away, you have a good mood.”

In this April 9, 2017, file photo, Vasyl Lomachenko interacts with fans after a boxing match against Jason Sosa, not shown, in Oxon Hill, Md. | AP Photo/Nick Wass, File
These idyllic environs 90 minutes west of Los Angeles might seem an unlikely home base for Lomachenko, the Ukrainian superstar and two-time Olympic gold medalist. Now a two-division professional champion, he could choose to live in Hollywood, Miami, Monaco or any other traditional playground for wealthy athletes.

Coastal California is also a long way from Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, the port city where he was raised and where his family still lives. But Lomachenko’s adopted home provides him with peace and concentration as he pursues his plan to become the greatest fighter in the world.

“I like it here because I am from a small town, and for me, that’s normal,” Lomachenko said in his rapidly improving English. “In my hometown, I know everybody. It’s the same here. I (have) lived here two or three years, and now I know all about this town. It’s comfortable. I don’t like a big city.”

Lomachenko (8-1, 6 KOs) takes another step in his evolution Saturday night in downtown Los Angeles when he defends his WBO 130-pound title against Colombia’s Miguel Marriaga (25-2, 21 KOs) on ESPN. A large US audience will be able to see the fighter with a talent compared to Muhammad Ali by Bob Arum, who promoted both fighters.

Author:  (Associated Press)
Full Article: http://www.philstar.com/sports/2017/08/04/1724886/lomachenko-finds-peace-focus-california-training

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