Chris Billam-Smith says he can see himself halting Tommy McCarthy in their rematch in Manchester on Saturday.
Billam-Smith (14-1, 10 KOs) secured a split decision win over McCarthy (18-3, 9 KOs) in their first meeting in July to rip away the European cruiserweight title, as well as adding the vacant British belt to his Commonwealth crown.
The 31-year-old, who has since vacated his Lonsdale title, believes both men will be improved fighters when they clash on the undercard of Conor Benn’s showdown against Chris van Heerden, live on DAZN.
“I think we’ll both be improved to be honest,” Billam-Smith told proboxing-fans.com on Wednesday.
“He’s obviously had a bit of time off, but he’s always probably fuelled by that loss.
“He felt like he won the fight and I know I won the fight, but off the back of it we’ve both definitely gone away and improved, so I think the fans are in for a real treat.
“I think it’ll be a highly skilled contest and another great fight.”
When asked if he thinks he can stop the Irishman, the Bournemouth man replied: “It depends on him to be honest, how well prepared he is.
“I’m very well prepared and I can see the stoppage happening this time definitely, but if not it’ll be a very wide points decision.”
‘The Gentleman’ retained his European strap with a unanimous decision victory over Dylan Bregeon in November, whilst his rival has not fought since their first outing.
Billam-Smith is highly ranked in all four governing bodies, particularly in the WBO where his stablemate, Lawrence Okolie holds the belt and in the IBF behind world champion, Mairis Briedis.
However, he feels that he still has more experience to gain, before moving onto a maiden world title shot.
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“It’s a weird landscape at the moment.
“All the belts seem to be like tied up or they’re waiting for fights or fights are happening that should have been happening or they’ve been delayed and delayed and delayed.
“So I’m not sure, but for me I’m not looking at a world title next.
“I’m going to be sort of fringe world level now and looking at that, those sorts of fights and pushing on and just getting ready for when that opportunity arises.”
Watch the full interview with Chris Billam-Smith below: