Liam ‘Beefy’ Smith (31-3-1, 18 KO’s) will make his hotly-anticipated BOXXER debut against fellow light-middleweight Hassan Mwakinyo (20-2, 14 KO’s), as the pair headline a stacked card of action in Liverpool on September 3.
The former world champion returns home to Merseyside to embark upon a path towards a second world title fight, following his stunning stoppage of Jessie Vargas in New York City earlier in the year.
Now part of the BOXXER stable, the 34-year-old has propelled himself back into world championship contention over the past 12 months, and will take another huge stride towards realising his dream in front of the live Sky television cameras, providing he can overcome his hard-hitting Tanzanian opponent.
Announcing the fight, BOXXER CEO and founder Ben Shalom, said: “We were delighted to sign Liam Smith, so there is no better place for him to make his debut with us than in his home town of Liverpool.
“Liam is a man on a mission. He wants a second world title and there are so many big fights coming his way. Coming off a defining stoppage win over Jessie Vargas at the iconic Madison Square Garden in April, and returning to Liverpool, where he stopped derby rival Anthony Fowler last October, Liam is truly in the best form of his life.
“This fight will be the perfect return to Sky against a proven dangerous puncher. Another big performance will set Liam up for a world title and potential box office fights.”
Smith will have it all to do on his homecoming however, with Mwakinyo stepping up to the 160lb division intent on elevating himself into the title picture too, and no stranger to upsetting the odds in the UK, having demolished Sam Eggington in just two rounds four years ago.
Meanwhile, two of the UK’s top light-heavyweights will provide chief support on the evening with the unbeaten Dan Azeez (16-0, 11 KO’s) defending the British strap he prized away from the talented Hosea Burton last year, against former champion Shakan Pitters (17-1, 6 KO’s).
One of Boxing’s hottest young talents, Adam Azim also features on the card, making the first defence of his WBC Youth title, on the back of ending his last four bouts well inside the distance, and earning the acclaim of Amir Khan, who has backed the 20-year-old sensation for world honours.
2018 Commonwealth Games medallist John Docherty (12-1, 9 KO’s) will take on Brazilian bomb-thrower Diego Costa (8-0, 5 KO’s) in what promises to be a pulsating super-middleweight showdown, whilst Khan’s protégé Tal Singh is also set to make his professional debut.
Looking ahead to the mouth-watering event, Adam Smith, Head of Boxing Development at Sky Sports, said: “There are some great fights on this Liverpool card – the British Light-Heavyweight Championship clash between Dan Azeez and Shakan Pitters will be electric, and every time I see Adam Aziz fight, I feel like I’m watching the emergence of an all-time great.
“This is a mammoth card for Merseyside at the start of September and I can’t wait to hear that Liverpool crowd when Liam Smith makes his walk to the ring.”