Tony Bellew has vowed to turn his dreams into reality when he takes on Ilunga Makabu for the vacant WBC World Cruiserweight title at Goodison Park – the home of his beloved Everton FC – on Sunday May 29, live on Sky Sports.
Lifelong Evertonian Bellew ‘boxed’ at the home of his club in the movie Creedwhere he won the World title in the last scene of the film, and gets the chance to make Hollywood come alive against the dangerous Congolese puncher.
All but one of Makabu’s 19 wins have come inside the distance, but Bellew has vowed to make it third time lucky in World title fights and says he cannot lose with the whole city behind him.
“It’s all on me now,” said Bellew. “I bugged Eddie Hearn for six months to get a World title fight and it was tough. People were pulling out of fights against me and I boxed Mateusz Masternak instead, a fight that I didn’t need to take but wanted to do it to prove I was a legitimate World level Cruiserweight.
“There’s been so much done behind the scenes and when we sat down for the event, we looked at June 4 but we couldn’t do it. The only date available was May 29 – my son’s eighth birthday – and I said ‘we can do it Bank Holiday Sunday, this city comes alive on Bank Holiday’s’.
“I’m a Scouser and a mad Evertonian – I don’t care how good he is, I don’t care how hard he hits, I am going to become WBC World Cruiserweight champion in front of thousands of Scousers and nothing will stop me. Creed has done something nuts to me, it’s created a whirlwind and this is where it’s taken me – it’s unbelievable.
“Thanks to Everton, Bill Kenwright and everyone that has believed in me and backed me from day one; the dream becomes a reality on May 29.”
Bellew’s World title bout with Makabu is part of a huge night of action on Merseyside as Stephen Smith gets the chance to bounce back from his IBF World title challenge in Connecticut as he fights for the vacant WBC Silver title.
Sean ‘Masher’ Dodd faces Pasquale di Silvio for the vacant WBA Inter-Continental Lightweight title, Hosea Burton defends his British Light-Heavyweight title against Liverpool man Tony Dodson, Tom Farrell and Kofi Yates clash in an eliminator for the British Super-Lightweight title
Merseyside Heavyweight favourite David Price is back in action and there’s a host of local talents getting a huge opportunity to impress in JJ Metcalfe, Ged Carroll, Steve Brogan, Craig Glover and Scott Fitzgerald.