Saturday night inside the M&S Bank Arena is a moment Troy Williamson has been waiting for in his career.
Last April 30 at the York Hall saw the 30-year-old fend off and eventually prove far too powerful for Kieran Smith in their British title final eliminator. The ending in the sixth round was a glimpse into what Williamson can do if you allow him that split second to land clean. The mandatory challenger, nicknamed ‘Trojan’, is now ready to go to war with British 154lbs champion Ted Cheeseman.
“I’ve been calling for this fight for a long time now and obviously the opportunity has come so I’m ready to grab it with both hands,” Williamson told Boxing Social.
“I think somebody like Cheeseman will bring out the best in me. I’ve always said that. You haven’t seen the best of me yet.”
Williamson knows that his style and that of Cheeseman’s could gel to produce something memorable. Potentially another ‘fight of the year’ contender which ‘The Big Cheese’, a two-time British champion, has been no stranger to over the last few years. Despite being only 26 years old, there is an argument that Cheeseman may have stayed at domestic level for too long and a second bite at European honours or something even greater should have been on the agenda instead.
“It all depends on what he had offered,” Williamson says in response. “If I had the British title and I got offered something bigger then I’d possibly let the British title go and fight for the bigger prize. If I didn’t and the next fight is a mandatory, then you have to fight.”
Winning the British title would be “unbelievable” in Williamson’s eyes. That eye-catching Lonsdale Belt catches the attention of most fighters and the three defences to win it outright is in the challenger’s plans as is defending it back in the North East.
“To win a British title is every British boxer’s dream. It’s one of the most beautiful belts out there in my opinion,” he says. “Getting the British title would be a dream come true. I’d like to do the British, Commonwealth and European… I’d like to do that sort of route.”
Williamson is familiar with the M&S Bank Arena (formerly Echo Arena) where he and Cheeseman fight tonight. The Darlington fighter boxed there as an amateur in 2014 and 2015. A loss to Anthony Fowler (who headlines tonight’s show against Liam Smith) was made up for when Williamson won the Senior ABAs the following year.
“It’s a great arena and Liverpool is a great fighting city so I’m looking forward to the crowd,” he says before warning, “And I’ll get the win again on October 9.
“All I got to do is take care of business, show up on the night. What I’ve been doing in training, if I carry that over to fight night then it shouldn’t be a problem and then you’ll have a new British champion.”
Main image: Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing.