Boxing: Callum Smith vs John Ryder

The WBSS tournament winner and winner of the Muhammad Ali Trophy, Callum Smith (26-0-0, 19 knockout victories), returns to his hometown of Liverpool on Saturday night, after over two years of not punching in his native England.  England back and defend his WBA world title and the WBC Diamond Super Middleweight belt, against compatriot and mandatory challenger John Ryder (28-4-0, 16 KO victories) at the Echo Arena in Liverpool, Merseyside, England  London in England.

The undefeated Super Middleweight titleholder has both given the prescribed fighting weight at today's official weigh-in in Liverpool, as well as his mandatory challenger John Ryder.  Thus, the fight tomorrow in the Echo Arena in Liverpool (England) and the defense of the WBA and the WBC Diamond Title is nothing against.

The World Cup match will be televised live by Sky Sports tomorrow in England and the DAZN streaming portal will broadcast the Liverpool event live in the United States.  It's the first appearance in his hometown since his 12-lap win over Erik Skoglund on September 12, 2017, for Liverpool's Callum Smith. Then Callum Smith triumphed in the World Boxing Super Series super middleweight tournament, Smith  who defeated Liverpooler in Round 7 in September last year in Jeddah, South Africa, defeating not only the WBSS_Turnier but also the Muhammad Ali Trophy.

Callum Smith has been in the ring just once to defend his two world championship belts since winning the WBSS_TUrniers in September last year when he defeated Frenchman Hassan N'dam N'jikam in the famous New York Madison Square Garden in the second round by KO.  The nine-month break between fights was partly due to Smith spending time with his wife and family, who increased the family last January with the birth of his daughter.

Hope to end the year with a super fight made way for his mandatory defense and his opponent Ryder earned his challenge through four consecutive victories.  Ryder clinched the No. 1 ranking position with a knockout victory in the seventh round, against undefeated Andrey Sirotkin last October.

While Ryder waited for his first title shot, he intervened for the interim world title he won against KO's unbeaten challenger in Australian Bilal Akkawy in the third round.

Both boxers fight in their tomorrow's battle for position as future potential opponents of Canelo Alvarez in his next big fight.  The Mexican icon and reigning world champion in the middleweight division comes fresh from a knockout victory against Sergey Kovalev, against whom he was the first time world champion in the light heavyweight division at the beginning of the month.

The win was Canelo's third title win in the third-weight division within a year after scoring the "regular" WBA super middleweight title last December with a knockout victory over Rocky Fielding in Round 3.  The full version of this WBA title, the title of WBA super champion, is in play on Saturday night in Liverpool, making the winner a tempting option for the most lucrative attraction in the sport.  

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