Liam Smith willing to board ‘next flight’ for Tszyu trip
LIAM Smith has reached the top of the boxing mountain.
From world title glory on home soil, to a stadium title defence against Canelo Alvarez in Texas, there’s very little the Liverpudlian hasn’t seen. After all, he’s from a pugilistic family.
But his next challenge could be something entirely different, as talks surrounding a fight between Smith (29-3-1, 16 KOs) and unbeaten star Tim Tszyu (19-0, 15 KOs) continue to escalate.
“I think my manager and my management team at MTK are in the middle of discussing it now,” Smith told Boxing Social.
“I’ll leave it down to them, and whoever else is involved in the talks. If there’s a deal there to be made, I’m sure it’ll be made.
“From my point of view, I think no questions should be asked of whether I’d fight him or not fight him, or whether I’d go to Australia to fight him.
“I’d fight him tomorrow, and I’d fly to Australia tomorrow, as long as the deal is right.”
The 32-year-old, who has lifted British, Commonwealth and world titles, is within striking distance of a second world crown, despite losing his last fight in a razor-thin decision against Magomed Kurbanov in May.
Rated just four spots behind Tszyu, who is listed first by the WBO, Smith sees a trip to Australia as the fast-track to a potential world title challenge.
“I’ve just been to Russia, Mexico, the States,” he explained.
“Put a fight to me, if it makes sense to me, I’d go. That’s exactly the same with Tim Tszyu.
“Obviously Tim fought on Wednesday, my social media went made. Would I go to Australia? Of course I would.
“Tim Tszyu’s no one different… he’s no one I fear, he’s no one I’m scared of. If it makes sense for me and my career, if I had my way, I’d be on the next flight there.”
In the two years that has passed since signing with No Limit Boxing, the 26-year-old Tszyu has experienced a rapid rise from untested prospect to world title contender.
Despite his lofty status by the major sanctioning bodies, Smith believes there are plenty of unanswered questions.
“I think he’s developing very very well, and I think he will develop to be a good fighter,” he added.
“I’ve said that on record before. I think they’ve matched him perfectly, watching his career and his opposition has gone the same way.
“That being said, who’s his best win? Probably Dennis Hogan is his best win. By all accounts, it looks like Dennis Hogan might retire after it. If he beats me, they’ll say his ready for sure.
“If he doesn’t beat me, then he’s not ready.
“I think he’ll end up a good fighter. I think now put somebody okay in front of him… you’ll get a few different answers on Tim Tszyu.
“I’m coming off the back of a loss, but it’s a great fight, and it’s a good name for Tim Tszyu. It does probably does put himself on the scene that he’s ready to challenge if he beats me.
“He needs that name, he needs that push.”
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