Michael Zerafa welcomes underdog tag

OVER the course of his professional career, Michael Zerafa has had many labels.

From promising prospect to talented speedster, the ascension of the Melbourne-based light middleweight peaked when he captured the prestigious Commonwealth title with a late-notice win in March.

And while there are many belts sitting in his growing cabinet, Zerafa (25-2, 14 KOs) will secure the biggest trophy of his punch-for-pay tenure if he upsets former IBF welterweight ruler Kell Brook this weekend on a stacked Matchroom Boxing card.

The 26-year-old will travel to Sheffield, flanked by stablemate Blake Caparello and manager Brendan Bourke among a tight-knit team that has plans of securing a marquee win.

“I’m obviously stepping up fighting Kell Brook in Sheffield,” Zerafa told Betelgeuse Films.

“The transition to Sam Labruna has been unreal. Being in the same camp as Blake Caparello, Joel Camilleri and Susie Ramandan, it’s been unreal.”

“We’ve got a good game plan going into this fight. We’re confident [and] we believe it’s our time. The best Michael Zerafa is going to be in England on December 8th.”

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“Brook has had injuries in the past, but he’s gotten them fixed. I expect nothing but the best Kell Brook, but the best Zerafa is going to be there as well.”

Brook (37-2, 26 KOs) is admittedly in the final chapter of his career, seeking a high-profile showdown with long feuding rival Amir Khan in 2019, and having already changed trainer.

But if Zerafa has his way, those plans will be scuppered, with the Australian looking to make inroads of his own in the official WBO light middleweight title eliminator at the Sheffield Arena.

“We believe it’s our time and I’m going to go there and shock the world,” he explained.

“I believe Brook and his team are looking past me, and that’s one of the biggest mistakes you can make. He’s already made that mistake.”

“He’s been talking about fighting Amir Khan, but I believe I’m going to upset him.”

The fight will be Zerafa’s second under new trainer Sam Labruna, who believes his charge is primed to secure a career best win on Sunday morning.

“We know what we’re up against, but we’re sure that Michael is going to give it a big shake,” added Labruna.

“He’s going really well, his preparation has been really good and he’s sparring has been really good. We’re expecting a good fight.

The world title eliminator between Michael Zerafa and Kell Brook will be broadcast live on Fox Sports, from 6.00am EST.

Photo: Marty Camilleri