Moore given shot at the big time

Ryan Moore will fight on the undercard of Carl Froch v Mikkel Kessler on Saturday
Ryan Moore will fight on the undercard of Carl Froch v Mikkel Kessler on Saturday
Dave Birmingham. Picture: Neil Marshall

Birmingham wins Irish friends as he eyes future title

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Ryan Moore has been offered a short-notice shot at glory.

The Waterlooville powerhouse will take on Liverpool’s rising star Callum Smith on Saturday on the undercard of Carl Froch’s super fight with Mikkel Kessler.

Moore has been praised for taking on the highly-touted Smith at just a few days’ notice. And he has been backed to rise to the challenge of a big assignment at the O2 Arena in London.

Smith is unbeaten in five professional fights after a decorated amateur career.

But Moore is undefeated in three super-middleweight contests since moving into the paid ranks.

The 24-year-old’s trainer, Michael Ballingall, gave credit to Moore for rising to the challenge

And he feels Moore is capable of delivering a big performance when he steps in to the ring in the capital.

Ballingall said: ‘I think taking this contest shows the class of Ryan as a boxer and a man.

‘Callum Smith is a class act, we know that. Everything is against us and it’s all loaded in Smith’s favour. But Ryan is the type of person who rises to a challenge.

‘One thing’s for sure – Ryan won’t be fazed by it all.

‘Some people won’t ever take a chance like this. Those people will never know what they can achieve.

‘There’s something in the best boxers that will make them rise to the occasion.

‘I believe that’s what Ryan will do.’

Moore travelled to the Midlands last weekend for some sparring with Jamaican heavy-hitter Ovill McKenzie ahead of the contest.

Ballingall said: ‘It’s good to have someone like Ovill who Ryan can go spar with. That will be a big help.’