Home News Results & photos from Liverpool: Callum Smith dominates Rebrasse, Fielding stops Vera...

Results & photos from Liverpool: Callum Smith dominates Rebrasse, Fielding stops Vera in 2

Credit: Lawrence Lustig

Callum Smith widely outpoints Frenchman Rebrasse

Callum Smith took home a wide points win over gutsy Frenchman Christopher Rebrasse at the Echo Arena in Liverpool on Friday night. It was set to be a coming-of-age fight for the talented home fighters against the former European champion who had taken George Groves a tough 12 rounds for the same belt in September in London.

Smith controlled the pace from the off against the experienced and talented 29 year old who was right in the fight in the first half despite Smith being on top. The eighth round looked to be the turning point for Smith who hurt Rebrasse with his trademark body shots and begin to slow the relentless pressure from the game visitor.

Those body shots almost resulted in a first stoppage loss on Rebrasse’s record as he was put down from a lethal left to the solar plexus from Smith, but despite the 25 year old pouring on the pressure from that point, Rebrasse heard not only the bell for the tenth round but also the final bell, nothing less than the Hauts-de-Seine man deserved for his part in a great contest.

Smith was awarded the win by the judges with two cards of 118-110 and one of 120-107, and showed once more that he could go the distance and end a fight with plenty left in the tank. The Liverpool man said that tonight’s test was a perfect learning curve for him to prepare for a World title shot sooner rather than later.

“Rebrasse was very tough, I have to give him a lot of credit,” said Smith. “He kept coming but I knew that going in there and that is why I chose to box him. I would have looked stupid going in there trying to blow him out of there. I respect his durability, he has proved it at the highest level. I think I showed that I can box and if I do go past one round I can stick to a game plan and do it but I did the 12 comfortably enough and felt I could have given more but what I was doing was working.

“I enjoy the early knockouts but if I am going to progress and go on to become a World champion I need fights like this. I feel I am improving all of the time and the only thing I need is experience, and I am gaining that.

“The left hand is a bit sore but hopefully it is just a bit of bruising. It went in the fifth but I still had to throw it, I can’t sit around and moan I have to throw and if I didn’t he would have come back into the fight. That’s boxing; you get injuries and you have to deal with them.

Promoter Eddie Hearn added: “Callum debuted on a Kell Brook card two and a half years ago and now he is headlining in his home town. It is great to watch a great young fighter come through the amateur ranks from the England to headlining his hometown. It is all about developing the fighters the right way and I feel his development has been first class

“People thought Callum was automatically going to win tonight but we knew how tough that fight was. There has been a lot of fight around Callum but that was the prefect fight and luckily the hype is real. He is going to be number one in the WBC now.

“That is going to put him on fight for challenging for the world title. Groves fights Jack and we feel we are only one fight away from that. The Rocky Fielding fight is a great fight for Liverpool but Callum has his eyes on World titles and that was the perfect performance. They are the kind of fights that will develop him as a fighter and he will probably have learnt more tonight than throughout his whole career.

“That is going to stand him in good stead when he challenges for the World title. It is within 12 months.”

Smith’s trainer Joe Gallagher added: “Callum came back after round five and said his left hand had gone – it didn’t look like that in round ten when he dropped him with a body shot. What a rapid rise, he only turned professional two and a half years ago and here he is headlining the Echo Arena and has just won the WBC Silver belt. I am very pleased Liverpool came out tonight to support Callum Smith because they have a huge future World champion here.”

Fielding destroys Vera with stunning display

Rocky Fielding announced himself on the World Super Middleweight stage in stunning fashion, stopping Brian Vera in two round.

Fielding swarmed all over Vera from the start and decked him with a brutal left upper cut in the first round and then finished the job in style in the second round, flooring the American, who appeared off-balance from stumbling over, with a huge left hand and then pouring on more relentless pressure to force referee Ian John Lewis to halt the contest after 1.39 of the second round.

Fielding is ranked in the top 15 in all four governing bodies after landing the vacant WBC International title with his win, and the ever-humble Liverpool man admits even he was surprised by how quickly he dismissed the experienced visitor.

“I was expecting a tough fight, I am not going to lie,” said Fielding. “I was expecting a hard 12 rounds in there.

“I knew I carried that bit of power so if I caught him clean I could do a bit of damage and that is what I did.

“In the changing rooms warming up we were trying to slip his jab with the left upper cut and it worked. I didn’t even know I threw it, I just threw it, caught him and he went down. I was buzzing with that

“I work hard with Oliver Harrison and got some good sparring with Martin Murray. That was the fight I needed to pick me up.

“[The second knockdown] As the referee was saying, if he is knocked down don’t hit him but until he hits the floor then if he is still in front of you he is still hitting you until he hits the floor. I caught him with some good shots and I knew once I caught him with a couple of good shots I knew I could get him out of there.

“I enjoyed it. I want to thank everyone for coming out and supporting me.”

Promoter Eddie Hearn added: “He is so underrated. Nobody does that to Brian Vera. He deserves lot of credit and I feel he doesn’t get it. He is working his way up the world govern bodies and he is doing things the right way.”

Fielding’s fellow World-rated Liverpool talent Callum Smith followed Fielding into the ring tonight in his own acid test against Christopher Rebrasse, and Fielding and Hearn had their say on a potential Merseyside showdown.

“I will support Callum,” said Fielding. “He is a Scouser and we are all out here supporting each other. I will sit back down with Eddie and Oliver and see what the next move is. I am up for it.”

“Rocky and Callum is a huge fight but as much as the British title is a wonderful belt I feel it deserves a little bit more,” said Hearn. “If it comes with a little bit more I don’t see the problem in making that fight. Rocky wants World title fights and so does Callum. Over the next 12 months they are both going to get them. If they meet each other it could be done of those classic final eliminators. That was a great performance tonight and he deserves a lot of credit.”

Bellew roars for World title shot after stoppage win

Tony Bellew declared himself ready for a third World title shot after stopping Ivica Bacurin.

Bellew dropped the Croatian three times before the stoppage; in the second round with a left to the temple, in the fifth with a combination and then a right hand in the ninth, before referee Steve Gray called a halt to proceedings early in the tenth and final round with the visitor in trouble in the corner from another right hand.

The Liverpool star is hunting down a World title clash with IBF king Yoan Pablo Hernandez, who defends his crown for the fifth time in May, and the ‘Bomber’ revealed that he was struggling with the flu in the build-up.

“I got ill last week but there was no way I was missing this,” said Bellew, who sent his best wishes to Sky Sports pundit and former World champion Jim Watt, whose daughter tragically passed away today. “Dave Coldwell has improved me 25 per cent at least but you cannot stop picking up injuries in camp and getting sick – my kids are bringing home every flu and cold bug from school.

“It was great to be back in there and back where I belong. I am ready for a World title shot. Eddie Hearn has delivered on every word he has said from day one and I believe that he will bring me that shot.”

Hearn added: “We want the winner of the IBF title fight in July and we’ll look to get him in there for that belt in October or November – it has to be a World title next for Tony.”

Murray begins life at Super Middleweight with KO win

Martin Murray enjoyed an explosive start to life at Super Middleweight, delivering a crunching body shot to claim a second round KO win over George Beroshvili at the Echo Arena in Liverpool on Friday night, live on Sky Sports.

Murray was making his bow in the 168lbs division in his first fight under new promoter Eddie Hearn following his heroic efforts against Gennady Golovkin in February, and the three-time Middleweight World title challenger wasted little time in showing he will be a force to reckon with in the buzzing Super Middleweight scene.

The 32 year old hurt his Georgian opponent with left hooks to the body in the opening session, and it was that same shot that did for the visitor with 2.29 on the clock in the second session.

“I felt great in there, very strong and I think that Super Middleweight is going to be my good for me,” said Murray. “The Golovkin fight is in the past now, I learnt a lot from it and I’ve soaked that experience up but I’ve moved on from it and looking forward to making an impact at Super Middle.

“I will leave it to Eddie and Oliver Harrison to see where we go next but I can see myself in some big fights”

Hearn added: “Martin’s had great fights with big names, he has a great following and he can get the big fights at Super Middleweight. I want to get him out ASAP so we’ll sit down right away and plot the next fight, but it’s a great start at Super Middleweight for him.”