Isaac Chilemba vs. Tony Bellew

By Clarence George on March 7, 2013
Isaac Chilemba vs. Tony Bellew
Isaac Chilemba and Tony Bellew, each with a single loss, appear to be evenly matched.

Light heavies Isaac Chilemba and Tony Bellew will face each other at the Echo Arena in Bellew’s hometown of Liverpool on March 30. At stake, Bellew’s WBC Silver title.

Twenty-five-year-old Chilemba (20-1-1, 9 KOs) is an eight-year pro. Never stopped, his sole loss came at the hands of the fantastically named Willbeforce Shihepo in 2007. He drew once, against Thomas Oosthuizen in 2010. A champ, “Golden Boy” won the vacant IBO super middleweight title by beating Michael Bolling via unanimous decision earlier that year. The Malawian fought twice in 2012, defeating Edison Miranda in February and Rayco Saunders in September, both by unanimous decision. Saunders was a replacement for scheduled, and far more formidable, opponent Zsolt Erdei. The Hungarian canceled the fight due to broken ribs sustained while training.

Bellew, 30 (19-1, 12 KOs), has been fighting since 2007. Although never stopped, he was defeated by Nathan Cleverly via majority decision in 2011. “The Bomber” fought three times last year, beating Danny McIntosh by fifth-round TKO in April, Miranda by ninth-round TKO in September, and Roberto Feliciano Bolonti by unanimous decision in November. It was in defeating the Argentine that the Liverpudlian won the vacant WBC Silver.

Chilemba and Bellew appear to be evenly matched. I think Chilemba is the superior boxer. But with a KO record of 60%, the Scouser hits harder than the South African resident, whose knockout record is at around 41%. Chilemba might prefer if it were the other way around, given the fight’s venue—the hometown advantage will almost certainly give the edge to Bellew, assuming a close fight.

Chilemba hopes that a win over Bellew will get him a crack at Chad Dawson. “I want Chad badly,” says Chilemba. Dawson’s WBC and Ring titles are the ones Chilemba wants “more than anything else.” A plausible match, and a good one. “Golden Boy” would have more than a chance, though he’d be unlikely to win. Thirty-year-old “Bad” (31-2, 17 KOs) is a 12-year veteran of the ring. More experienced, he’s also just plain better. And, with a KO record of close to 50%, he’s the harder puncher. But Dawson isn’t focusing on Chilemba—he’s seeking to avenge his 2010 loss to Jean Pascal, facing him in Montreal on May 25.

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Tony Bellew vs Danny Macintosh 2/2


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  1. Clarence George 07:57am, 03/09/2013

    Expectedly wise, Irish.

  2. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo (aka) Gimpel 07:16am, 03/09/2013

    Clarence George-Ah yes….some of my ancestors came over from Ireland after a “stop over” of some years in Blantyre, Scotland….or was it Blantyre, Malawi…either way…it’s all good! Thanks for your breakdown on a potential Dawson/Chilemba match up….I always bet on the guy who’s “just plain better”!

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