By Elliot Foster
Tom Stalker has had his next opponent revealed.
The Liverpool lightweight returns to title action in his home city next month, exclusively live on BoxNation. He’ll come up against 39-year-old Antonio Joao Bento (30-15-2, 18 KOs) on June 4 at the ECHO Arena for the vacant WBO European title.
Stalker vs. Bento comes in support of Liam Smith’s WBO super-welterweight title defence against Predrag Radosevic.
The added matchup represents Stalker's fourth crack at the crown. The Liverpudlian twice drew with Welshman Craig Evans last year and been stopped at the hands of Jack Catterall in October, 2014.
Bento had been set to vie for the same belt against Jamie Kavanagh in February this year, but the card was cancelled at the 11th hour following a shooting in Dublin, the city in which the show was being staged.
But now he’ll get the chance to take on the 31-year-old southpaw for the silverware in his second fight of the calendar year –– and a win, he will hope, will come by stoppage as he look to keep up his three-fight early ending streak.
Their clash is flanked by Paul Butler’s clash against Petchbarngborn Kokietgym in a defence of the WBO International super-flyweight title which doubles up as a final eliminator for the world title and a pair of European title showdowns on the bill –– with Ryan Farrag defending his bantamweight bauble against Karim Guerfi and Jazza Dickens and Abigail Medina contesting the vacant crown at 122lbs.
Meanwhile, Zolani Tete will defend the IBF International bantamweight title, Matty Fagan and Romeo Romaeo clash in an intriguing lightweight match-up, Declan Geraghty is set for action for the second time in four weeks and Kalam Leather will join his brother, undefeated super-lightweight Josh Leather (9-0, 3 KOs), on the card as he makes his professional debut after signing a contract with Frank Warren and Queensberry Promotions, while there are spots on the bill for Steven Lewis and British and Commonwealth super-welterweight champ Liam Williams, who fights over eight rounds.