By Jonathan Nagioff (@jonathannagioff)
Cruiserweight Chris Billam-Smith says he will put on a ‘performance’ when he returns to the ring on June 16 at the o2 academy in Bournemouth.
The ‘Gentleman’ extended his unbeaten record to five straight wins with a fifth-round stoppage win over experienced Romanian Gheorghe Danut in March, at the same venue.
‘The Gentleman’, trained by Shane McGuigan is yet to learn the name of his next opponent with just under three weeks to go until he headlines Steve Bendall’s ‘The Dawning’ bill.
And the former Poole ABC man has intensified his training regime ahead of his first eight rounder and sixth professional outing.
Billam-Smith told the Bournemouth Rock: “It’s been exactly the same just slightly longer sessions.
“We’ve changed a little bit up in this camp because I was picking up a few niggles so one of the sessions, we’ve done a lighter session so a shadow box rather than a punch (session) one day a week and that seems to have paid off.
“I’m feeling great for this camp, done two 8 round spars this week with light heavyweight Kirk Garvey, who fights for the southern area title two weeks before my fight.
“Some of the lads will just tuck up and you know you can just walk forward, not going to throw anything and you can just unload but I really want to put on a performance this time and I think that’s been shown in sparring.
“Shane’s much happier with the work I’ve been doing so that’s the key, putting on a quality performance and the result will come.”
The highly-rated Brit has transferred to McGuigan’s gym in London full-time and despite having title ambitions, he is not looking past June 16.
Billam-Smith added: “If it finishes in three seconds then great, if it goes 8 rounds then so be it.
“If you hurt someone in the first round you’re not going to think, I need 8 rounds because you do all the work in the gym.
“You do the 8 rounds sparring in the gym and then jump on the bag for 8 rounds.
“Some people might need it from a mentality point of view to complete rounds but that’s not me.
“I’m focusing on this fight. I don’t know who I’ve got yet I could have a very trick lad.
“Obviously you’ve always got to have plans for the future, but those plans will only come to fruition if I win this fight.”
Billam-Smith, who made his professional debut at the Boscombe venue last September, has since fought at Wembley Arena before returning to his hometown in March and trainer Shane McGuigan emphasised the importance of building up a fanbase in Bournemouth.
Speaking to the Bournemouth Rock in March, McGuigan said: “We want to build a fanbase.
“That’s the most important thing about coming back here.
“We had the chance of putting him on up in Glasgow last week, but I made sure that he came back here, got his fight on back down here and builds that fanbase because he’s such a likeable lad.”
Tickets for the fight can be purchased from Chris directly on 07969053529