Kieran Smith: “This is my time to step up on the big stage and show what I can do.”

Kieran Smith: “This is my time to step up on the big stage and show what I can do.”

By Chandler Waller

Next Saturday, on the undercard of Sunny Edward’s World title charge against Moruti Mthalane, another talented Brit will also be in the biggest fight of his career.

Kieran Smith’s name has been mentioned on the grapevine when talking about the domestic super-welterweight scene, and is yet to be mentioned along the likes of Fowler, Cheeseman, Fitzgerald. However, that could all change as he adds the finishing touches to his British title final eliminator camp.

“I’ve probably had about nine weeks [to prepare]. When the final eliminator news came out, BBBofC and MTK got in touch, and then it was just a back and forwards with them.

“From there, it was just about Frank Warren setting a date for it, so the agreement was made for a fight in May and then obviously that show got made for the 30th April, and soon after they confirmed it for that.”

The bout with Troy Williamson was one which caught the eye of the British boxing public. Kieran Smith had been here before, just one year ago where a final eliminator with Anthony Fowler never came to fruition. Now with the date set in stone and the bit between his teeth, Smith can capture the attention of the domestic scene on April 30th, after what he believes has been his best preparation.

“Everybody’s going to say the same thing, but it’s never been better for me because I’ve been in the gym for the last year. So in this camp, none of it has really been about weight loss or just doing things for the sake of it, I’ve just been focusing on improving my boxing, and making sure I’m ready for the night.”

“We’re lucky enough that we got the nine weeks notice to work on tactics and stuff like that. Whereas if I hadn’t been staying ready,  I’d have been spending most of these eight weeks just trying to get fit and lose all of the weight just so I can fight. I’m already in that shape to fight.”

Smith’s opponent Troy Williamson, appeared somewhat fortunate to come away with a win in his last outing against Harry Scarff. Some might take that performance as a blueprint on how to defeat Williamson, but the Scottish 27-year-old believes he outperforms him in every department. When asked by FightPost about Williamson, Smith replied:

“I’ve watched bits and bobs of his career, just on MTK shows and stuff like that. I’ve never seen the full Harry Scarff fight, but I’ve seen parts of it – the first six rounds or so, and I honestly believe I can beat him in every aspect. I believe he’s a good fighter, he carries a bit of power but, I think I nullify what he’s got – the same as any super-welterweight in Britain at the moment.

“Troy Williamson won’t be the same Troy Williamson as he was against Harry Scarff, you’d be a fool to think that. I’m not taking anything from that fight, he’s obviously going to change his tactics. He knows that what he did against Harry Scarff didn’t work well. It lead to it being a very close fight, a fight which a lot of people thought Scarff won, so he’s of course going to change his tactics for taking on a southpaw like me.”

Last time out, Williamson was searching for one big shot to end things early against Scarff, it proved to be detrimental as he lost rounds in the process. Smith expects Williamson to have improved, but believes it could be bitter lesson for Williamson on fight night, he said:

“I’m expecting a sharper Troy Williamson than the one that fought Harry Scarff, and he’ll try to put the pressure on me to try and break me down, but I think he’s in for a shock.”

“I just expect to outbox him, and if it comes to a fight that’s inside – I’ve got the tools to deal with that as well. I believe I can beat him long-range and up close, to be honest.”

As previously mentioned, Smith is yet to be considered among the best at 154lbs domestically, but a win on April 30th could do just that for his career. Smith believes this will be a breakout win.

“This is my time to step up on the big stage and show what I can do. This is it, this is the moment – it’s not just eight weeks of work to get here, this has taken me years of work to get to this point. For the people who’ve said in the last year or so ‘why are you training all the time, you’re mad, take a break, you’re always in the gym, this and that’ – it’s for these moments, and it’s going to pay off.

“Of course, I want my name up there and spoken about with your Fowlers, your Cheesemans, Metcalfs, so then you’re properly in the mix. Every fight is a big fight then.”

From those three that Smith mentioned, Cheeseman and Fowler are expected to meet in a domestic battle sometime this year. Smith concluded the interview by offering his official breakdown on the fight.

“I want to say Cheeseman, but Fowler is improving under Shane McGuigan and I think he’ll be too smart for Cheeseman. Cheeseman can box, but he just has that willingness to fight. He will not stop getting drawn into a fight, so I think that could play into Fowler’s hands big time. If it works for Shane McGuigan’s plan, it’ll benefit Fowler more if he can make it play into their hands, McGuigan’s very good, he’s very knowledgeable.”

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