Callum Smith is on a confidence high after earning his maiden stoppage win when a powerful left hook floored Tommy Tolan in the first round of this third professional fight in Betfair’s ‘Unfinished Business in Belfast on Saturday (February 9).
Tolan got to his feet after hitting the canvas in the opening exchanges of the Odyssey Arena bout but was unable to deal with further blows from the Liverpool super middleweight and the referee stepped in.
“It is great to get the first stoppage,” reflected Smith, whose record now reads 3-0. “It proved to people that I can punch and it gives me confidence knowing that I can do it.
“I didn’t go out and go for him, I went out on the back foot and if you look at the fight I didn’t throw a punch for about 30 seconds. My plan was to box, move and use my jab for a few rounds because I expected him to try and rush me early on.
“I thought I might get a stoppage later on but I didn’t expect to get him out in the first round but he walked onto a good shot, which seemed to catch him perfectly.
“It came at the right time, I had two points wins and if I had got another victory which had gone the distance people might start thinking that I can’t punch, so it is good to prove to people that I can.
“I will only get stronger as I mature because I am still young and I have time to fill out to the weight. I have always said I am confident in my boxing ability and I have now shown that I have a certain amount of power as well.
“I’m out again in Liverpool in March. I will plan for six good rounds and probably start on the back foot again. I don’t want to necessarily go looking for the stoppage because that is a big mistake that a lot of people make.”
Smith’s impressive start to life in the paid ranks has enthused promoter Eddie Hearn, who is hoping the 22 year old can earn a title shot by the end of the year.
“It's going to be hard to hold Callum back,” said Hearn. “I want him boxing every month and at that rate he will be ready for titles in 2013. He is an exceptional talent and I'm so excited about the journey he has ahead of him.”
Tickets for Betfair’s ‘No Retreat, No Surrender’ at the Liverpool Echo Arena on March 30 are on sale now priced £30, £40 and £60 from the Echo Arena on 0844 8000 400 and www.echoarena.com . £100 ringside and £150 VIP tickets are available from Matchroom Boxing on 01277 359900 and at www.matchroomboxing.com .