Never one to hide his emotions, Tony Bellew has revealed the opponent he disliked the most in his career claiming ‘he looks down his nose at me.’
Bellew had a number of fractious pre-fight build-ups, most famously with David Haye across two box office fights that he won by knockout in 2017 and 2018.
They came after Bellew also knocked out Haye’s friend BJ Flores to retain the WBC world cruiserweight championship he had won in his previous fight against Ilunga Junior Makabu at Goodison Park, the home of his beloved Everton FC, in May 2016.
His final fight came against Oleksandr Usyk in 2018 and although Bellew was eventually knocked out, he has always spoken of the respect he has for the now unified world heavyweight world champion.
Speaking to Stillryan, Bellew was asked who his most hated rival was out of all the opponents he faced in his 34-fight career.
He looks down his nose at me as if he’s better than me. And he also said some things to me after the fight. He was very respectful and we shook hands after it and then he went completely back on it and said the opposite to the press.”
Bellew and Cleverly fought twice, first in 2011 when the Welshman won the WBO World Light Heavyweight title with a majority draw, then again in 2014. No belt was on the line that night and Bellew won by split decision in a fight that, despite the animosity in the build-up, failed to ever really catch fire.