World light-heavyweight champion Nathan Cleverly claims Tony Bellew's trash-talking - not his fighting ability - has earned him a shot at his title.
Cleverly will put his belt on the line when the bitter rivals meet in a grudge encounter in Bellew's home city of Liverpool on October 15.
The pair earned notoriety when they had to be separated as bad blood spilled over at a press conference to promote their ultimately aborted bout in May.
That clash was called off after Bellew - a late replacement for Jurgen Brahmer - ran out of time to make the weight and Cleverly went on to beat Poland's Aleksy Kuziemski instead.
Both men have continued to exchange verbal blows since and Cleverly, 24, says he is only fighting Bellew to remove him from the title equation.
Cleverly, unbeaten in 22 fights, said: "We are under the same promoter so it is an easy fight to make.
"Before I push on I want to get the rid of everyone on the domestic scene and Tony has come along.
"I have got the confidence to take this fight on knowing it is not going to damage my career. It is one of those fights that is a stepping stone.
"I think Tony's talking earned the fight - he knows that. That's why he acted like he did in the press conference.
"But I've got no issue with that. I didn't have to take the fight, I didn't have to come to Liverpool. I could have gone a different route.
"I am a born winner and the outcome is going to remain the same, I am going to stay undefeated."
Bellew dismissed all of Cleverly's claims as the pair met up again yesterday at a press conference in Liverpool.
The 28-year-old, himself a British and Commonwealth champion and also undefeated after 16 fights, is convinced taking the belt is his destiny.
He said: "He is faster than me but there is a way of negating speed and that is a fantastic jab.
"But not only am I going to be throwing a fantastic jab, I am going to come back with various things, different combinations and power shots that he has never seen or felt.
"I am going to walk out of that arena crowned a world champion.
"October 15 is going to be the sorriest night of his life.
"He is getting the best payday of his career because I generate media interest. He can't generate anything.
"What kind of champion comes to my hometown for his second defence? That is a champion that can't sell out his own back garden."Tags: Nathan Cleverly , Tony Bellew , Cleverly-Bellew , Cleverly vs Bellew