WBC world super-lightweight champion Viktor Postol is singing the praises of his trainer Freddie Roach ahead of his July 23 unification fight with WBO champion Terence Crawford.

The unbeaten Ukrainian has been training out of Roach’s famed Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles for several years, and has since become the 140lb division leader.

He knocked out Lucas Matthysse in October to earn that mantle, and feels his work with Roach will play a key role in the upcoming fight with Crawford.

“I do not consider myself an underdog in this fight.  Terence Crawford’s fans might consider me as the underdog but that does not bother me,” he said.

“I’m 100% confident in myself and in my victory on July 23 and the reasons are simple.  I work harder in training camp than my opponents because I have to.  Because I want to.  I have the best trainer working with me and his name his Freddie Roach.  He has been named Trainer of the Year a record seven times and he is in the Hall of Fame.  Crawford has no one like that on his team.

“Since I have been training with Freddie I have knocked out two of the three opponents I have faced — Lucas Matthysse and Selcuk Aydin.  Both were No. 2 world-rated contenders and both times I was considered the underdog.  I have passed every test that I have taken as a professional fighter and with the best teacher in boxing working with me I intend to pass this one on July 23 with flying colors.  This victory will prove to everyone that I am the best fighter at 140lbs and the king of the division.”

Roach, best known for his historic partnership with Manny Pacquiao, has previously said Postol is one of the hardest workers he’s ever teamed up with.

Postol is an underdog with the bookmakers and most observors feel Crawford will have too much for him, however Roach remains adamant his man will upset the odds.

“I do not feel that Viktor is an underdog going into this fight.  Why should I?  In his two toughest tests — Lucas Matthysse and Selcuk Aydin — he didn’t just knock them out, he took their will to fight away.  He broke them down brick by brick,” he said.

“His experience against blue chip opposition has been great preparation for his fight with Terence Crawford. Don’t get me wrong. I have a lot of respect for Crawford. He has a lot of talent.  But I think this is going to come down to resumes and I think Postol has fought tougher and better opponents than Crawford.

“Postol even spent an entire training camp with Manny Pacquiao in 2014 when Manny was preparing for Chris Algieri.  Viktor more than held his own against Manny.  Crawford is going to find out that defending a title against Hank Lundy and Dierry Jean is a lot different than fighting a fellow undefeated world champion like Viktor Postol.  A win for Viktor will mean that the U.S. and the world has a new star in boxing. A star as bright as boxing has ever seen.”