Smith vs Ryder Undercard Preview

James Tennyson (25,3,0) vs Craig Evans (20,2,2)

British Lightweight Title Eliminator

Tennyson vs Evans has all the makings of a great fight, when the two battle it out for the mandatory position for the British Lightweight championship. Given how powerful Tennyson has looked in his career at Super-Featherweight, when he blasted out the likes of former standout amateur Martin Ward, and with the impressive showing he made in his lightweight debut last time out against Atif Shafiq, I would imagine the Tennyson is likely to take it to Welshman Evans from the start.

Evans, a more technical boxer than Tennyson, is probably best known for his exciting trilogy with Thomas Stalker. He will look to position himself to fight for the coveted British Title, which he previously for against Scott Cradle in his unsuccessful first attempt in 2015. Aside from the Cardle loss, Evans’ only other loss is a stoppage against undefeated Russian, Roman Andreev. Evans has good wins over the likes of Ormond, Stalker and Boy Jones. However, I would expect it to be the Belfast man Tennyson, who takes the win on Saturday night.

This is because he has fought and beat a higher class of opposition in the likes of Martin Ward and Ryan Doyle. He also mixed it with superstar Tevin Farmer, when he was beaten by the Philadelphia native last year when taking a crack at the IBF World Title. The experience of mixing with a higher standard of opposition, coupled with his heavy handedness, leads me to believe Tennyson should have enough to beat Evans, who is not the biggest puncher.

Prediction: Tennyson late stoppage

Craig Glover (10,2,0) vs Chris Billam-Smith (9,1,0)

Vacant Commonwealth (British Empire) Cruiserweight Title

This is an intriguing match up in the thriving domestic Cruiserweight scene, when Tony Bellew’s charge Craig Glover, battles Bournemouth man Billam-Smith for the vacant Commonwealth Title.

Glover has a couple of losses on his record, including a surprise stoppage at the hands of little-known Czech, Vaclav Pejsat. Billam-Smith’s only blemish was a razor type split decision-loss against Dillian Whyte protegee, Richard Riakporhe, when they fought back in July on the undercard of Whyte Rivas.

Both men can bang and have sparred before, with the spars being touted as absolute wars. For me it has the potential to be the fight of the night. Both men have suffered defeat, and if either was to take another loss it is a long road back to title contention, given how many good domestic fighters there are at that weight currently. With the likes of Riakporhe, Massey, Chamberlain, McCarthy, Jumah and Ultimate Boxer champion, Mikael Lawal all active domestically, neither Glover or Billam-Smith will want to go to the bottom of that pile, and a defeat would send them there.

In terms of Saturday’s bout, I would tend to side with the Shane McGuigan trained Billam-Smith, because of how close his fight with the big punching Riakphore was. Additionally, there is the fact that Glover has already tasted a couple of defeats at a lower level than this fight. One would imagine Glover will feel he has more to prove and will come out firing to impress his home crowd and to show he belongs at this level. He’ll try to make it a fire fight, and when he does, I imagine Billam-Smith will try to utilise his height advantage and keep firing his jab, getting to Glover as he comes in. Glover could then walk onto a big shot and it may well be goodnight. Glover has power though and everything to gain and everything to lose, so if he wins I would not at all be surprised.

Prediction: Billam-Smith mid to late stoppage

Anthony Fowler (10,1,0) vs Harry Scarff (8,0,0)

Super Welterweight Bout

Home fighter Antony Fowler will try to continue building toward the bigger domestic names in the Super-Welterweight division this weekend, when he takes on English Champion Harry Scarff. Fowler is desperate to avenge the split decision loss he dropped against bitter rival Scott Fitzgerald. A bout between the two North-West rivals has been mooted to take place at Preston’s Deepdale Stadium next Spring.

Following their first fight, Fowler claims he underestimated Fitzgerald, and if that is the case, he will not want another slip up against Scarff. Scarff took a good win against the previously undefeated Jack Flatley when he won the English title, but other than it’s difficult to know how good he is. Fowler is relentless, always comes to fight, is very fit and has a great amateur experience, having fought the world’s best with Team GB. On this basis I would expect him to overcome the unknown quantity Scarff, and to secure the right to either rematch with Fitzgerald, or an eliminator with Cheeseman for the right to rematch Fitzgerald.

Prediction: Fowler comfortable UD points win.

Tom Farrell (17,2,0) vs Sean Dodd (16,5,1)

Super Lightweight Bout

Farrell Dodd is a fascinating dust up between two local friends. Farrell Is looking to get himself back into title contention after defeats against Ohara Davies and Phillip Bowes of recent. The eccentric Dodd on the other hand, looks to be having one last hurrah and stab at getting a big fight.

Dodd has provided us with some great moments over the past few years, such as the two thrilling fights with Scott Cardle, but his recent form has been on the decline. Consecutive losses against Tommy Coyle, Joe Cordina and journeyman Jordan Ellison have left many thinking he is finished, and he may well be. He’s achieved a lot in his short time in boxing, such as challenging and drawing for the British Title, a fight many thought he won. He also picked up the Commonwealth and WBC International titles over the course of his career. He’s got respectable names on his record such as Buckland, European champ Patera, who bested Lewis Ritson, and former standout amateur Tom Stalker.

I expect Farrell as the bigger and the younger man, to have enough in the tank to get the win over Dodd and look toward returning his attention to securing some domestic honours.

Prediction: Farrell stoppage.

Stephen Smith Return vs (unknown)

Lightweight Bout

Liverpool favourite Steepen Smith returns this Saturday against a yet unknown opponent. Smith, one of Liverpool’s four famous boxing brothers, had almost two years out of the ring, after the horrific ear injury he sustained in his Vegas bout against Francisco Vargas in 2017. Now campaigning at Lightweight, Smith has had a few comeback fights, and was aiming for a more meaningful fight before Christmas, but sadly injured his hand in his last appearance. He’ll hope for a comfortable victory before building towards some form of title next year. A rematch with Lee Selby would be something I’d certainly pay to see.

Thomas Whittaker Hart (3,0,0) vs Josip Perkovic (6,10,1)

Light Heavyweight Bout

Former GB star Whittaker-Hart, who like Craig Glover, is managed by Tony Bellew makes his fourth professional appearance this weekend. He is a product of the famous Rotunda Gym and will look to move 4-0 and build toward some good domestic fights in 2020 within the Light-Heavyweight division, another domestic weight class rammed full of talent and good fights to be made.

Another former Rotunda amateur, Marcos Molloy, makes his second appearance this weekend and will look to impress as he looks to go 2-0 this weekend in front of his home crowd. St. Helens Welterweight Tom Aitchison will also look to go 2-0 when he fights Croatian Petrinic.

By Aaron Ludford for SimBoxx🥊

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