EDMONTON, Canada (November 6, 2017) – In its continuing efforts as the boxing network destination for Canadian boxing fans, Super Channel has announced that it has secured the exclusive rights to air the Liam “Beefy” Smith vs. Liam Williams rematch, this Saturday (Nov. 11), live from Metro Radio Arena in New Castle, United Kingdom.
The replay of Smith vs. Williams I from this past April will also air on Super Channel this Friday (11 p.m. / 8 p.m. PT) and Saturday (1:45 p.m. ET / 10:45 a.m. PT).
The Smith vs. Williams II card, presented by Frank Warren’s Queensbury Promotions and starting at 3 p.m. ET / 12 p.m. PT, will be a 12-round World Boxing Organization (WBO) super welterweight title eliminator with the winner positioned to fight the winner of the WBO title fight between defending champion Miquel Cotto and challenger Sadam Ali in December. Cotto, however, claims that he will retire after that fight. Williams is presently rated No. 2 by the WBO, Smith No. 4, as well as No. 7 in The Ring magazine’s independent rankings.
Additional Smith vs. Williams II card fights airing Saturday on Super Channel will be announced later this week.
“With the World Boxing Super Series taking a break before the semi-final matches return in the new year, we are excited to be able to continue to deliver high-stakes, world-class boxing to Canadian fight fans with this highly acclaimed rematch between Smith and Williams,” said Troy Wassill, Director of Programming, Domestic Distributors & Sports for Super Channel. “Given the controversy surrounding their initial match in April, tension will be high and both fighters will be looking to settle a score.”
In the last fight for both boxers, Smith (25-1-1, 14 KOs) won a controversial fight last April when Williams retired after the ninth round, despite leading on all three judges’ scorecards by identical scores of 86-85. Williams had suffered a double laceration on his right eyebrow that he claimed was the result of Smith’s flagrant headbutt in the third round. Smith believes he was robbed of the opportunity to knockout Williams.
The 29-year-old Smith captured the WBO Super Welterweight World Championship in 2015, stopping American Josh Thompson (17-1) in the seventh round. The gifted Brit made two successful title defenses against fellow countryman and previously undefeated “Jimmy” Kilrain Kelly (16-0) and Predrag Radosevic (30-1), stopping them in the seventh and second rounds, respectively.
Smith lost his belt to star Saul “Canelo” Alvarez a year ago, getting knocked out in the ninth round of their WBO title fight in Texas. Smith won a four-round decision against Marian Cazacu in a tune-up fight this past March, setting the stage for an interim WBO super welterweight title fight against Williams last April in Manchester, UK. Smith won the fight but was ineligible to capture the interim title because he failed to make the contracted weight.
“I don’t think you had to be a good fighter to beat me in the first six rounds of our first fight,” Smith said about his original fight with Williams. “I was slow, flat and sluggish. I can never be that bad again. What I did to try and make weight during fight week killed me. It was nothing to do with having a slow start by game plan. Liam had a good start and I couldn’t have been worse. There are 10 fighters in Britain that could have properly out-boxed me on that night.
“The fight was changing before round nine. He threw his head in numerous times because I didn’t get cut off it. Regardless, you go in the ring, you get wet. The minute you got cut, you knew your chips were down. You spewed it! You chose to let Gary (his head trainer) pull you out. You knew you’d had your moment and you were gone.
“I was up for this rematch and that is why we’re here now. As soon as I start better, Liam is going to be in more of a fight earlier on and he won’t get his own way. It is only to go one way and he is going to crumble earlier than he did last time. I am stronger than him and I have more heart than him.”
Williams, 25, has notable victories over Gabor Gorbics (22-4) for the vacant WBO European super middleweight title, and Gary Corcoran (15-0) for the BBBBofC British crown. The Welshman also was the Commonwealth (British Empire) 154-pound division titlist.
“Our first meeting was a good fight,” Williams explained. “I felt like I started very well. I was out-boxing him and getting a lot of rounds in the bag. He was coming on strong, which we were always prepared for, (because) that is the kind of fighter Liam is. He comes with a very solid defense and he is very strong.
“Obviously it ended the way it did. It wasn’t fair. We didn’t give the fans a chance to see what the proper outcome should have been. I took a nasty cut to the eye. These things happen, it isn’t a tickling contest. These things happen in boxing and I’m glad to get a chance to do it again.
“I think he was down in the fight and he needed to do something. It was frustrating, and I do believe the head clash was intentional. We are both going to be better. I am going to be more prepared and it is going to be another cracking fight. I’m going to put this to bed.”
Super Channel has aired several major boxing events live in 2017 including Brook vs. Spence Jr., Pacquiao vs.Horn, Eubank, Jr. vs. Abraham, Lomachenko vs. Marriaga, Crawford vs. Indongo and the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) quarterfinals.