Liverpool’s unsung Nathan Bennett believes he is being underestimated ahead of his 140lbs clash with hot prospect Dalton Smith at Matchroom’s Fight Camp in Brentwood, Essex, this Saturday (August 1).
Managed by the shrewd Steve Wood, Bennett (9-1, 2 KOs) has fought under-the-radar on non-televised shows and is naturally eager to embrace his unlikely shot at the spotlight. He feels an upset could be on the cards.
“It’s an ask but I’m definitely capable of beating him or I wouldn’t have taken the fight,” said Bennett. “I was driving in my car when I got a phone call off my manager Steve Wood and he said, ‘What do you reckon on this Dalton Smith?’. I just told him to make the fight.
“Let’s face it, I wouldn’t have been boxing until next year if it wasn’t for this fight, would I? He fought just before lockdown and so did I so we’re both going to be there and we’re both going to be fresh. He fought on March 7 and then I fought on the March 14.
“I couldn’t get out of bed for some of my earlier opponents because I knew I was going to beat them. That’s the honest truth. It was unprofessional of me but that’s definitely not the case for this fight. These are the fights that get me out of bed.
“I’m not like those fighters that he’s fought and he’s going to find that out August 1. Weight isn’t going to be an issue for me. I’m six foot so I’ve got the height advantage. I’ll meet him straight in the middle. They’re most probably underestimating my boxing ability. I had 80 fights as an amateur, won two titles and boxed everywhere. It’s going to be a good fight.
“They’re all 50-50 fights on every show otherwise they wouldn’t have put them on. It’s great exposure for me. I don’t think this will ever happen again. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity and it will be watched all around the world. This is my opportunity. This was meant to be for me. There’s no expectations of me but I’ve got expectations of myself.”
Smith-Bennett will be televised live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US, supporting a cracking main event as Brummie battler Sam Eggington clashes with former British 154lbs champion Ted Cheeseman.