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Tobias Webb takes on Callum Smith for WBC International Super-Middleweight title

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: May 17, 2014

Swansea boxer Tobias Webb at FunkyPump Gym ahead of his bout against Callum Smith.

Swansea boxer Tobias Webb at FunkyPump Gym ahead of his bout against Callum Smith.

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TOBIAS Webb will shock the boxing public when he takes on Callum Smith for the WBC International Super-Middleweight title tonight, according to the Swansea fighter's media manager.

Webb will be underdog at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff where he faces a highly-rated opponent, who is tipped for big things in the next couple of years.

Pundits suggest Smith could reach the level of Carl Froch and George Groves if he carries along his current trajectory.

The 23-year-old Liverpudlian enters the ring having won all nine of his fights to date, seven by knockout.

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But Neil Navarra, who represents Webb, reckons it is not just the result that may cause a few raised eyebrows.

He believes Webb has been transformed by his new training regime, and the change in him as a fighter will also surprise people.

"Callum Evans is widely tipped to be the next big thing. He comes from a formidable boxing family that also includes brothers Paul and Steve," said Navarra.

"His trainer Joe Gallagher is renowned for turning out good, well conditioned fighters.

"But having said that, Tobias has had brilliant preparation. He's an extremely talented boxer and I think they're going to underestimate him.

"He's been sparring in Germany, with Nathan Cleverly and with Billy Joe Saunders. His new trainer Chris Ware has made some changes behind the scenes. He's looked after him, not just in terms of boxing but also strength and conditioning.

"He's making the weight a lot easier. He's now fitter than he's ever been going into the ring.

"He had a bit of time off after prizefighter, but now he's back and focused. He's more determined than ever.

"This is a new Tobias and a lot of people will be shocked when they see him."

Webb has a record of 14 wins, one draw and one defeat from his 16 fights to date and last fought in February at the Motorpoint Arena when he defeated Nathan King.

He returns to that venue this evening, where he will tackle an opponent touted for greatness.

Smith claimed a silver medal at welterweight in the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, moving into the professional ranks two years later.

He overcame Francois Bastient in his most recent bout last month, the Frenchman's corner throwing in the towel in the third round.

"Tobias is going to take one fight at a time, but this is a massive crossroads for both fighters," added Navarra,

"We're not looking past this fight. This is Tobias's biggest test to date.

"Tobias is a very fluid fighter and one of the most talented boxers Wales has ever produced. (Uncle) Enzo (Maccarinelli) thinks Tobias is a more talented boxer than him. Now he has to fulfil that potential."

Smith revealed he has been waiting for an opportunity to test himself against Webb, who is two years his senior, for some time.

"It was a fight that was mentioned for the Froch vs. Kessler bill a year ago, so I think we've always been likely to fight sooner rather than later," said Smith.

"It's a good fight for me and I think that this will show what level I am at. My brother Paul was meant to fight him earlier in the year and he was disappointed that it didn't come off but that's boxing, these things work themselves out and now I get the chance to face him.

"Tobias is an ambitious guy and he will be coming to win, and I have said that fighting guys who believe they can beat me will bring the best out of me and we'll really see how good I am."

Also on a bill topped by Nathan Cleverly's fight with Sean Corbin and Lee Selby against Romulo Koasicha is Garnant light-welterweight Chris Jenkins.

He takes on Nicaraguan opponent Miguel Aguilar looking to maintain his 100 per cent record.

Jenkins has been victorious in all 14 of his fights so far, six by knockout, and won the Prizefighter competition last July.

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