Advertisement
Advertisement

Bellew Calls Cleverly "F*****g Rat!" - Near Brawl Erupts

Newly-crowned WBO light-heavyweight champion Nathan Cleverly lit the touchpaper for Saturday's grudge match with domestic rival Tony Bellew in an explosive press conference which saw the pair nearly come to blows.

Cleverly will face Liverpudlian Bellew after Juergen Braehmer, who he had been set to challenge for the WBO belt, pulled out of the O2 Arena bout and was stripped of his title.

Cleverly was subsequently upgraded from 'interim' champion, and for his first defence promoter Frank Warren gave a chance to unbeaten Commonwealth champion Bellew.

The two are long-time rivals and sparks flew when they came face-to-face in London on Thursday.

Bellew arrived at the press conference late but immediately started insulting Welshman Cleverly and security guards had to intervene as the banter turned nasty.

"I'll give you a free punch," Cleverly taunted.

Hot-tempered Bellew reacted, threatening to put the Welshman "in an ambulance", spitting expletives and repeatedly calling Cleverly "a f****** rat" when the champion offered to take the matter outside. Security guards then had to step in to physically pull the two men apart.

Cleverly, who had some choice obscenities of his own, said: "He is not as good as Braehmer.

"Braehmer was the champion, he was proven.

"But I'll only call myself the world champion when I win on Saturday night."

It emerged yesterday that Braehmer was not going to defend his belt, citing an eye injury, and Warren then lobbied the WBO to strip the German of his title and name Cleverly champion while beginning the search for a credible replacement opponent.

Bellew, ranked in the WBO top 20, jumped at the chance, while the governing body granted Warren's wish overnight.

Bellew, 28, needs to lose a significant amount of weight to make the 12st 7lb limit having taken the fight at late notice.

"The weight is not an issue," said the challenger. "I've met the board's requirement and it doesn't matter whether I get 24 hours' notice, 24 days or 24 months, I'll knock him out."

Warren told Press Association Sport: "Once he has the test weigh-in, hopefully everything will be confirmed.

"We've got nearly everything done that we need to do.

"It's funny because it's gone from a fight that hardly got a mention because all everyone was talking about was the George Groves and James DeGale fight and now we've got two fights that they are all talking about."

Both Cleverly and Bellew are unbeaten Warren prospects and the promoter admitted: "I'll be very honest and admit that I'd prefer these two guys not to be fighting at this stage.

"I would have liked to have built it up a bit more but he (Bellew) wanted it, he said he'd been in the gym - which we know he has been, because he lives a good life - and it is what it is.

"The fight between Nathan and Tony has been brewing up in the last year and it's happened sooner than expected but I'm delighted that the fight is on and the fans are in for a real treat on Saturday night.

"There is nothing like big domestic fights and in this case on Saturday at the O2 we have two big title fights involving British guys and I'm expecting fireworks in the ring."

Cleverly, 24, has garnered more attention in recent years due to his rapid rise through the sport while studying a mathematics degree which he completed last year.

But Bellew is a talent himself and despite wobbles in recent performances, the Liverpudlian remains unbeaten and has a reputation as a powerful puncher.

Bellew (15-0, 10KOs) had been training for a July rematch with Ovill McKenzie anyway and said: "I'm going to knock Cleverly out cold.

"I wouldn't have put myself forward if I didn't think I could beat him.

"Be it two months' notice or two days' notice, I know I can beat Cleverly - I always have. For the fans, I can promise them the best fight they will see in the last 10 years."

The news adds spice to an already solid card in London, with Cleverly (21-0, 10KOs) sharing top billing with the much-hyped British and Commonwealth super-middleweight title clash between DeGale and Groves.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Uncle Rodge on 05-19-2011

[QUOTE=Sparked_1985;10565626]Your Mum's the minor leagues.[/QUOTE] Priceless!

Comment by English puncher on 05-19-2011

[QUOTE=Stanly Ketchel;10565612]I will only consider myself the champ after I beat some tomato can this weekend. Thats how brits become "world champs". British boxing is the minor leagues.[/QUOTE] another dumb comment from somebody who has never boxed but thinks he…

Comment by Phatfarm1980 on 05-19-2011

I wouldnt at all be surprised if this was a publicity stunt conjured up by old fish eyes!! Still, it was entertaining and fun to watch :)

Comment by Sparked_1985 on 05-19-2011

[QUOTE=OG Amzzino;10565705]Whats funny is Cleverly said "i won't consider myself champion until after the fight Saturday" but then not long after he says "i'm the champion".[/QUOTE] To be fair, he yet to fight in world-class. I'm not sure we can…

Comment by *OG Wenger* on 05-19-2011

Whats funny is Cleverly said "i won't consider myself champion until after the fight Saturday" but then not long after he says "i'm the champion".

Post a Comment/View More User Comments (12)
Top Headlines Video: De La Hoya Talks Mayweather, Canelo, Khan, More De La Hoya: In Mayweather Rematch, it's 70-30 in Canelo's Favor! Mikhaylenko, Chuprakov Back in Action in Ekaterinburg Khan Prepared To Make Things Ugly To Prevail: A Win is a Win Video: De La Hoya Pumped During Canelo-Khan Fight Week Khan: I Took The Tougher Fight, Mayweather Easier Than Canelo! Vlasov Dominates Bykhovtsev, Sillakh Clash Up Next on June 2 Video: Canelo Discusses Khan in Two-Part Media Interview Video: Amir Khan Two-Part Media Interview on Canelo Canelo: Lara, Mayweather Fights Helped Me Get Ready For Khan Photos: Canelo, Khan Grand Arrival Frenzy at MGM Grand Video: Canelo, Khan Grand Arrivals at MGM Grand, Las Vegas De La Hoya: Canelo-Khan Easily Beats Pac-Bradley 3 PPV Numbers Wilder vs. Povetkin Undercard Coming Together: Bivol, Ochigava Roach: I Want Tapia To Be Smart, Box Lemieux All Fight Khan: Mayweather is Bitter, Everyone Talking About Me, Canelo Jack-Bute, DeGale-Medina: Ratings For Showtime Double Amir Khan expects Canelo to weigh 175 on fight night Sadam Ali Return Likely For Vargas-Salido Bill Korobov vs. Vera Clash Set For Alvarado-Torres Card Khan: I Think Fury, Haye Beat Joshua at The Moment Stephen Smith Added To Bellew-Makabu Undercard Stevens breaks down Canelo-Khan and the Caneloweight Hunter: If I Had Khan at 9, We Wouldn't Be Talking Mayweather Video: Chisora vs. Pulev Heated Confrontation at Presser Video: Amir Khan on Floyd Mayweather's Comeback, Canelo Photos: Tony Bellew vs. Ilunga Makabu Press Conference Photos: Chisora, Pulev Erupts With Near Brawl at Presser IBF Formally Orders Wake vs. Guzman 122-Pound Title Fight Barroso's Promoter: I'm Supremely Confident Crolla Will Be KO'd DeGale Wants Jack Fight in U.K., But Open to Las Vegas Shannon Briggs To Face Dimitrenko On 'Haye Day' Bill Shawn Porter: 'Wouldn’t Be Surprised' If Khan Upsets Canelo Victor Ortiz-Andre Berto II: Post-Fight Report Card John Fury: Tyson Knocks Wladimir Klitschko Out By Round 10 Canelo vs. Khan - British Trade People Predict The Fight George Foreman Warns: If Canelo Overconfident, Khan Can Win Trainer: Tyson Fury Will NOT Retire, Likely Targets Joshua Next Khan Would Reject Mayweather: I'll Mess With Him Like He Did Me Sanchez: I'm Confident Golovkin KO's 'Diva' Canelo in 8 or 9
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement