3 More Rounds

Bellew staying focused on Santos and not Cleverly

Tony Bellew says he’s got his mind solely on Julio Cesar Dos Santos, whom he faces on July 12 in Liverpool, England at the Echo Arena, despite sharing top billing with rival Nathan Cleverly.

Cleverly will be facing Alejandro Valori in another cruiserweight bout with the hopes that the two will then meet in a rematch later this year, having already fought in 2011, with Cleverly having scored a decision win over Bellew for the WBO light heavyweight title.

Bellew has been hoping to get a rematch with Cleverly but says he’s focused on his upcoming bout first and foremost.

“It’s all about July 12, not about Nathan,” said Bellew. “I cannot think about anything other than Julio Santos, he’s a very, very durable and hard-punching Brazilian. I know he is strong, he has never been stopped and he does a little of everything. Fans come to see me because I stop people, and this guy is a solid proven Cruiserweight so we’ll see what I can do with him. I’ve already fought a former World Cruiserweight title challenger in Valery Brudov, this is a similar fight.

“Brudov is a tried and tested Cruiserweight on my debut at the weight and Cleverly fought a Light Heavyweight on his. Shaun Corbin had been smashed in two rounds by Karo Murat, he’s not a Cruiserweight. Fighters know that there are some fights we call ‘gimmes’ – you don’t get many of them, I’ve only had a couple in my career. Atoli Moore for the Commonwealth title was the biggest gimme I’ve ever had and I hope every morning when I wake-up that I am facing Atoli again. I got in the ring that night and thought this isn’t happening, he cannot throw punches that slow and expect to not get KO’d, you don’t get many of them in your career and that night I got one, and Nathan got one in his last fight.”

 On the card, Anthony Joshua and Luke Campbell will also be in action while unbeaten featherweight John Quigley will also step in the ring.

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