Former WBO 154lbs champion Liam Smith has never lost to domestic opposition and believes that statistic won’t change when he meets fellow Scouser Anthony Fowler in an intriguing local derby at the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool on October 9.
Smith recently dropped a debatable points decision to Magomed Kurbanov in Russia in May, but feels he has more than enough left in the tank to deal with Rio 2016 Olympian Fowler.
‘Beefy’ believes his experience at a higher level against the likes of Canelo Alvarez, Jaime Munguia and Liam Williams will prove crucial in the later rounds next weekend.
“I’m in the same mind frame that I was ahead of Canelo, you couldn’t have convinced me that I was going to lose that fight,” said Smith. “I’m the same now. I’ve got that bit between my teeth. I’ve got a lot at stake. I’m bang up for this fight. Pride and bragging rights, you name it, it’s all on the line for me.
“Beating Anthony Fowler doesn’t get me any closer to fighting for a World Title in my career. I don’t say that as if I’m overlooking him. Anybody above me isn’t going to look on paper and think, ‘Wow Liam Smith beat Anthony Fowler in the UK’. But if you look and it says Fowler beat Smith, then it’s a big statement.
“I’ve never lost to a domestic fighter as a pro. I’ll beat Anthony Fowler; I’ll never lose to a domestic fighter. That’s a good little record to have. I turned pro and I’ve had 30-odd fights and I’ve never lost to a Brit. If I beat Fowler, I’m not going to fight another domestic fighter again, unless it’s a [Chris] Eubank [Jr] or someone like that.
“I’m confident that I beat Anthony Fowler every day of the week and twice on Sunday. If I turn up at 100% then I beat Anthony Fowler. The way I see the fight going, it’ll be competitive early doors and then experience, cuteness and everything else will come on. I’ll stop him down the straight.
“I think he’s a good fighter for four rounds, but he reverts back to what he does. Once its goes past four rounds the fight is only going one way. I’ll just show him I’m that little bit of a step ahead and he wasn’t ready for that step up just yet.
“I’ve been in with bigger punches, better fighters, I’ve been in local derbies with my brothers, he’s got a lot to deal with next week. We’ll have fun in the build-up when he’s back in Liverpool. We’ll have some fun and games.”
Main image: Matchroom Boxing.