Callum Smith (23-0, 17 KOs) is expecting the best version of Juergen Braehmer (49-3, 35 KOs) before their Ali Trophy semi-final clash in the super middleweight edition of the World Boxing Super Series February 24 at the Arena Nürnberger Versicherung.
“I have had a good training camp,” said Smith. “I have improved over the sparring sessions, now it’s all about the getting the tactics right and perform on the night and I should come out on top.”
Both 27-year-old Smith and 39-year-old Braehmer appeared as serious contenders to win the Muhammad Trophy with their quarter-final performances last year.
Britain’s Smith claimed a 116-112, 117-110, 117-111 victory on the judges’ cards after a thrilling match against Sweden’s Erik Skoglund at the Echo Arena in Liverpool.
Germany’s Braehmer, a former two-time light heavyweight champion, proved age is just a number when he beat American hope Rob Brant in dominant fashion at the Kongresshalle in Schwerin with the judges scoring it 119-109, 118-110 and 116-112 in favour of the 39-year-old veteran.
“Braehmer looked good against Brant,” said Smith. “He is a good fighter, he is experienced. He has been there and done it, a former two-time world champion. He is an awkward fighter and he knows he is awkward and he uses it to his own advantage.”
“I have to concentrate on me. If I do what I do good, I will be too good for Braehmer on the night. I am expecting a good fight, I am expecting the best version of Juergen Braehmer, but we have everything covered to make sure I will proceed to the final.”
“It’s a big opportunity for Braehmer nearing the end of his career. What better way to finish than winning this tournament. But I feel that whatever he brings I got the answer for it. I know that I am capable of coming through and look good doing it.”
WORLD BOXING SUPER SERIES FIXTURES
27/01/2018 Cruiserweight Semi-Final:
Aleksandr Usyk vs. Mairis Briedis (WBO World & WBC World) – Usyk won MD
Riga Arena, Riga, Latvia
03/02/18 Cruiserweight Semi-Final:
Murat Gassiev vs. Yunier Dorticos (IBF World & WBA World) – Gassiev won TKO12
Bolshoy Ice Dome, Sochi, Russia
17/02/18 Super Middleweight Semi-Final:
George Groves vs. Chris Eubank Jr (WBA Super World & IBO World) – Groves won UD
Manchester Arena, Manchester, UK
24/02/18 Super Middleweight Semi-Final:
Callum Smith vs. Juergen Braehmer (WBC Diamond Belt)
Arena Nürnberger Versicherung, Nuremberg, Germany