Liverpool’s Stephen Smith will face Sergio Manuel Medina for the WBC International Silver Super-featherweight title on the undercard of Carl Froch vs George Groves at the Manchester Arena on Saturday night.
Smith, 28, (pictured) a former two weight British champion knows a win over the Argentine will push him towards a world title challenge in 2014, with the winner of the fight to be ordered to face WBC Silver champ Fernando Saucedo for the title within 90 days of victory.
If ‘Swifty’ can pull off the win against Saucedo, his promoter Eddie Hearn believes Smith can become the first of the Smith brothers to claim a World title.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for Stephen and if he can overcome an experienced Medina he will land an automatic shot at Saucedo for the Silver title which will ultimately lead to a World title shot in 2014,” said Hearn.
Medina, 31, challenged Juan Manuel Lopez for the WBO Super Bantamweight title in 2008 and faced Saucedo in August for the Silver title. Smith is on a hot streak of five straight wins, four inside the distance, the latest being his sensational British title win over Gary Buckland, where he KO’d the tough Welshman with a brutal upper cut in Cardiff in August.
Smith’s clash with Medina is part of a great line-up of action in Manchester, led by Carl Froch’s WBA and IBF World Super Middleweight title defence against George Groves.
Scott Quigg defends his WBA Super Bantamweight title against Diego Silva and his gym-mate and resurgent Lightweight star Anthony Crolla defends his WBO Inter-Continental Lightweight title against Stephen Foster Jr. on a busy night for trainer Joe Gallagher, who also has Super Featherweight champion Stephen Smith on the bill and unbeaten Lightweight talent Scotty Cardle.
There’s also a late spot on the bill for Murray, who is back in action after his controversial loss to Sergio Martinez in his second World title challenge in April. The 31 year old will now face Sergey Khomitsky in Manchester after his December fight in Australia fell through.
Former IBF World Bantamweight champion Jamie McDonnell fights in an eight round bout, Rocky Fielding defends his Commonwealth Super Middleweight title and Olympic Gold medal hero Luke Campbell MBE tackles his fourth pro contest, while unbeaten Super Flyweight Kal Yafai continues his comeback from injury.
Unfortunately Anthony Joshua MBE has been forced off the bill after suffering an injury in training.
The London 2012 gold medallist Anthony Joshua has pulled out of his 4th professional fight against Argentina’s Hector Alfredo Avila after suffering a bicep strain in training.
Olympic gold medallist, Joshua, 24, has won all three of his professional contests and he fought only 5 days ago on the Prizefighter heavyweight bill at the York Hall, scoring a second-round stoppage against Croatia’s Hrvoje Kisicek.
The exposure Joshua would have got fighting on the Froch vs Groves bill being shown on Sky Box Office would have been great for his profile to a wider audience with the fight being beamed around the world, but he is due out again on December 14th against Dorian Darch at London’s O2 Arena and has been told he must rest his injury.
“Got a mild shoulder injury, the medical team have advised me to rest. I cant argue,” tweeted Joshua.
“It’s nothing major. I just have to listen to professional advice.”