Billam-Smith and Masternak face off in London ahead of December world title fight

11/01/2023 - No comments

Sunday, December 10th at the Bournemouth beachfront is about to get heated. Chris ‘The Gentleman’ Billam-Smith (18-1, 12 KO’s) steps into the ring to defend his WBO World Cruiserweight Championship for the first time.

Mateusz Masternak (47-5, 31 KO’s), the former European, IBF, and WBA Intercontinental Cruiserweight Champion, who’s ranked #5 globally by WBO and #9 by WBC, is stepping up to challenge Billam-Smith. This electrifying fight is the main attraction of the BOXXER card, scheduled at the Bournemouth International Centre and broadcasted exclusively on Sky Sports.

This isn’t Masternak’s first UK rodeo. He’s back after his 2015 tussle with Tony Bellew, riding the momentum of a six-fight victory wave. Notably, he knocked out Armend Xhoxhaj in the fourth round, who lasted five rounds against Billam-Smith the prior year.

Billam-Smith isn’t just defending his title; he’s defending his turf. He’s twice sold out the BIC, and December will be his third time being the star of Bournemouth’s main indoor venue. The last time fans saw him in action was in May, where he claimed victory over Lawrence Okolie at the packed Vitality Stadium.

With the BOXXER team backing him, Billam-Smith is also geared up for a potential rematch against Okolie, if he holds onto his championship. This December fight is more than just a contest—it’s Billam-Smith’s grand year-end gesture of gratitude for the unwavering support from his fans. The Sunday schedule ensures Bournemouth AFC supporters can join in after their Saturday away game.

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Billam-Smith confidently stated, “Mateusz Masternak is exceptionally talented, and his track record speaks for itself. Our styles are complementary, which promises an exciting fight.”

Masternak responded, “Chris Billam-Smith is an excellent fighter, and he’s proven his mettle time and again. While I respect him immensely, I believe in my skillset and experience. England has always been special, with fans who add life to the fight.”

Ben Shalom, BOXXER’s head honcho, shared, “Billam-Smith wanted a significant fight in his hometown, and Masternak is the perfect fit. He’s a seasoned fighter and poses a real threat to Billam-Smith. The energy at the Bournemouth International Centre during a BOXXER event is always electric. This one’s set to be off the charts. A perfect finale for the year!”

Chris Billam-Smith Reflects on the Upcoming Fight with Masternak:

“Masterank is adept across the board; he’s the most comprehensive competitor I’ve faced yet. He’s strong in all aspects without clear shortcomings. Our similarities in style promise an engaging fight. I foresee a truly entertaining event where our approaches in the ring will complement each other seamlessly.”

“The acoustics of the venue amplify the sound tremendously, and with a chorus of fans from Bournemouth pouring their passion into every chant, it creates an electrifying environment. That very atmosphere fueled my passion for boxing, and having such unwavering support is something I treasure deeply.”

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Mateusz Masternak Offers His Perspective on Billam-Smith:

“Seventeen years of dedication have brought me to the verge of a world title opportunity. It’s been an adventure filled with highs and lows, but I’m ready to claim a championship. I’ve been patient, and now that moment is nearly upon us. Chris is a fighter with a lot of spirit, yet he hasn’t encountered an opponent with my level of experience and resilience.”

“With a strong Polish presence locally, I’ll be drawing support even in Billam-Smith’s stronghold. We’re set for an unforgettable evening.”

Shane McGuigan, Billam-Smith’s Trainer, Anticipates the Fight:

“This is shaping up to be a gripping fight for however long it lasts. I can envision both fighters landing significant blows. Masternak has yet to face someone with Chris’s speed, especially when it comes to close-range combinations.”

“Expect a nail-biter of a fight. Masternak is experienced, packs a punch, can take a hit, and is an all-around tough opponent – we hold him in high regard. Fans are sure to witness a spectacular display.”

Ticket Info:

  • Early Bird: Opens October 30th
  • General Entry: Available from November 1st.