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Bellotti: I’m a big step up and can KO Ford

Boxing is littered with instances where one punch can revive a fighter’s fortunes and send their career on an upward trajectory.

Watford puncher Reece Bellotti (14-4, 12 KOs) feels he could be in that position tonight when he meets highly-rated American prospect Raymond Ford at Matchroom’s Fight Camp in Brentwood.

Broadcast live on ‘Before The Bell’ before the main DAZN offering, former Commonwealth featherweight champion Bellotti believes he presents a stout step-up in class for New Jersey’s touted Ford and that his proven power and experience might cause the upset.

‘Bomber’ Bellotti has lost his last two fights in good class, dropping a points verdict to an in-form Jordan Gill following a wafer-thin, split decision loss to Francesco Grandelli in Italy. Southpaw Ford (8-0-1, 4 KOs) was held to an eight-round draw against Aaron Perez in Dallas in March, to add caution to his rise as a professional.

“The pressure is definitely more on him than me,” said Bellotti. “He’s the favourite, he’s been touted as the next best thing in America, whereas I’ve lost my last two so there’s no pressure on me. I’ve had hard fights, those losses weren’t in easy touches, they were against quality opposition. You have to take step ups and I believe I am a big step up from his last opponent, we’ll see that tonight.

“It’s massive, one fight can change the path of your career and that’s what I want to do, beat Ray and change my path – I can win any fight by KO, I just need the game plan and pick the right shot, and I can knock him out.

“I’m in great shape and life is good. I’ve been off work for a while and fully concentrating on the fight. I’ve had great sparring, it’s probably up there with the best camp of my life as far as sparring is concerned, we’ve had lots of different people in, all sorts of styles to adapt to what Ford brings tonight.

“You have to make camp hard work because it’s going to be hard work on the night and you have to get used to it and be ready for it, I am fully prepared, and I can’t wait.

“There were spots in his last fight where he was on the back foot and a bit negative, and his opponent capitalized on that. Granted, not all the shots landed flush, but he looked like he was being outworked at points in the fight. So, I have taken little bits from it, but I expect him to be better than that tonight.

“I think he could fight on the backfoot but after drawing that fight in his head he might be thinking that he needs to come forward and have a go at times, mix it up a bit, so I will be prepared for that. If I can hurt him early, that’ll put doubts in his head and he’s never been 10 rounds before, that’s what we want to do.”

Main image: Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing.