By Shaun Brown
Rocky Fielding says he has little interest in a fight with local super middleweight rival, Callum Smith, but is still very keen on facing the elder of the four fighting brothers, Paul.
This Saturday night at Liverpool’s Echo Arena, Fielding has a sink or swim fight when he faces Noe Gonzalez for the WBA Inter-Continental title at 168lbs. Gonzalez represents Fielding’s stiffest test to date having previously faced the likes of Felix Sturm, Adonis Stevenson and George Groves. The latter two got the Argentinian-based Uruguayan out inside six rounds but his own stat of 22 of his 30 wins coming inside the distance has the attention of the home town fighter.
“He’s a dangerous fighter and got a good few knockouts on his record. He’s only lost to top fighters. It’s a tough fight for me but I think I’m ready for that step up,” declared Fielding 18-0 (10 KOs).
A win for the Liverpudlian could set up a big 12 months with a world ranking, eliminators and a world title shot part of his and promoter, Eddie Hearn’s plans. But Fielding hopes that dream world title shot may come sooner should Paul Smith land a fight with WBO Super Middleweight champion, Arthur Abraham, on Sep 27 in Germany as has been previously reported but not confirmed.
Fielding finds himself in a slight predicament with that particular fight. On one hand he would love his fellow Scouser to win the world title but on the other he hopes the 31 year old is on the wrong end of a defeat. A point he made abundantly clear to Boxing Scene
“I used to get on with Paul but I hope he gets f***ed for this one. Nah I’m only messing,” said a semi-serious Fielding.
“He slagged me off in my last fight and said he would’ve knocked me out. From one side I hope he gets f***ed, from the other side I wouldn’t mind him winning the title and me taking it from him in a voluntary defence. I’ve gone off him now but it’s a fight he’s got a chance of winning.”
‘Scene asked the unbeaten 26 year old how he sees the fight going, should it happen.
“I haven’t really watched much of Abraham but I’ve watched Paul. There’s nothing much there I can see what he brings except he relies on his punching power. He’s a bit lazy sometimes, doesn’t throw many shots. If he did win it then maybe next summer I can fight him for it. Abraham’s okay, he’s beatable, Paul has a chance of doing it. They both seem to be kind of the same. I think Paul’s a bit lazy on his feet, no movement but I’ll be tuning in to watch.”
According to Fielding, a fight with him and Paul is a subject that he is often approached about in Liverpool.
“I’ve been getting asked every day for 18 months about when I’m fighting him. Got asked twice yesterday,” he said.
But what he doesn’t have constantly mentioned in his earholes is the name of Callum Smith, another local rival and stablemate of Fielding’s.
The youngest of the four Smith boxing brothers has been turning heads with his impressive displays after stopping nine of his first eleven opponents inside six rounds or less. Promoter, Eddie Hearn, has been leading the bandwagon about ‘Mundo’ and feels he is one of, if not the best prospect in the world. Is the hype justified?
“He’s doing what he’s doing, there’s hype around him. I don’t know if that’s because of what Eddie’s doing,” said an unsure Fielding in response.
“I know Prizefighter (which Fielding won in 2011) is different from a fight, he beat [Tobias] Webb in two rounds, I beat him in one and nothing got mentioned about things like that. I’ve won Prizefighter and the English and Commonwealth titles. I let Callum do what he does. There’s not a lot to say about it. He’s doing well and people are on about him. Until he fights someone good, decent then we’ll see. Yeah there’s big hype, that’s it, that’s all you can say. He’s got to fight someone decent enough that can test him and see what he’s about. I don’t know.”
Fielding didn’t appear interested in Callum Smith and even less interested when I mentioned the possibility of a fight between the two. Fielding feels there’s little point and little to get excited about. The money isn’t there, in his opinion, and it would be better with something bigger brought to the table.
“I’ve spoke about it with Eddie. At the moment it’s not a big fight. It’s not a fight with meaning. But me and Paul would sell the Echo Arena out and the money involved in fighting Paul would be good. Maybe down the line in 18 months, two years it can happen and hopefully with a few belts behind us. Something on the line, something that would sell. You’d be lucky right now if the Olympia sold out for it and I’d probably sell that out myself anyway. If you build it up and we do well and get titles and fight for a world title that makes more sense for the fight to happen doesn’t it?”
You can read more from Rocky Fielding in the first part of our interview by clicking this link
Shaun Brown is the UK Editor at Boxing Scene and a contributor to Boxing Monthly. He can be contacted at [email protected] with any news, views or stories you may have.