Tony Bellew fixed his gaze on Isaac Chilemba at today’s weigh in for tomorrow night’s Betfair’s ‘No Retreat, No Surrender’ bill at the Echo Arena in Liverpool live on Sky Sports, and said he will go ‘to the trenches’ in their official final eliminator for the WBC light heavyweight title.
Bellew didn’t take his eyes off Chilemba as both men hit the scales inside the championship weight and Bellew lapped up the roar of the huge crowd as he vowed to put the Malawian to the sword tomorrow night.
“I am so close to that World title that I am ready to go into the trenches,” said Bellew. “I know that at some point in this fight I am going to have to go to the wall. I already know what it takes to go there – he doesn’t. I don’t think he contemplates how hard this fight is going to be.
“Everyone has a game plan until they get in with me. People say ‘Tony Bellew looks slow, he doesn’t do this or that right’, but when they get hit, their game plan changes.
“Every fight I'm in from now is a must-win fight. I'm number one with the WBC now and I've worked hard to get to that position, so I'm nearly where I want to be and I cannot afford to slip up against Isaac. It's not just the pressure I put on myself that's on the line, the shot at Chad Dawson is the ultimate goal but I've got a family of three to feed and I've got to win, I have to, and whichever way I have to do it I will do.
“I'm going to hurt him, it's as simple as that – I'm bringing him pain. He knows he cannot come to Liverpool and run and try to steal a decision, he has to come here and fight and he's going to have to do that in front of 10,000 Scousers going crazy, they've never seen nothing like he will tonight, it's going to erupt and they'll be baying for his blood and I'm going to give it to them.”
Bellew and Chilemba top the bill on a great night of action with Derry Mathews and Anthony Crolla provide the chief support as they reprise their 2012 fight of the year, this time for the vacant Commonwealth lightweight title.
Rocky Fielding defends his English super middleweight title against Wayne Reed while Olympic captain Thomas Stalker boxes in his hometown for the first time as a pro. Unbeaten Liverpool starlet Jazza Dickens faces Jon Fernandes for the vacant super bantamweight title, while Stalker’s fellow former Team GB members Kal Yafai, Callum Smith and Scotty Cardle continue their pro journeys.
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.