Tommy McCarthy [18(9)-2(1)] revealed his beef with Chris Billam Smith [12(10)-1(0)] has roots in a single Tweet.
The Belfast fighter and ‘The Gentleman’ trade leather in an out-of-the-blue grudge match on the first installment of Fight Camp II.
The British, Commonwealth and European title fight has become a bad blood match and the usually ultra laid back McCarthy told Irish-Boxing.com why.
It appears one Tweet in particular from the Shane McGuigan -rained fighter sparked it off: “Billam Smiths being calling me out for over a year, I never met him until the press conference, he’s annoying the life out of me.
“Obviously when you’re a champion everyone calls you out, but I was ignoring it until he sent a tweet saying I’d no balls, or he’d punch holes in me – if someone came up to you saying that you’re going to get a reaction.”
Now after weeks of back and forth, ‘The Mac Attack’ is ready to show the English fighter just why he is European cruiserweight champion. The 30-year-old is full of confidence going into the DAZN-broadcast chief support clash outdoors in Matchroom’s Headquarters.
“I’m booming with confidence, my sparring been top-notch and training is going good,” he continues.
It has been suggested that ‘Big Tommy’s’ more vocal approach has cranked up the pressure on him somewhat. The Pete Taylor-trained cruiser, who has recently signed a promotional agreement with Matchroom, doesn’t agree.
The Mark Dunlop-managed fighter feels the pressure lies at the feet of his opponent due to the fact Billam Smith looked for the fight.
“There’s more pressure on him than me, he asked for this fight- he called me out now he has to back it up.”
Ireland’s 15th European Champion has expressed a desire to fight for a world title since he buckled the famous blue belt around his waist – and is hopeful victory over ‘The Gentleman’ will earn him a world title shot.
Speaking previously, promoter Eddie Hearn suggested a world title fight will be on the cards for the Fight Camp winner.
“Tommy took the risk to travel to Italy against [Fabio] Turchi and followed it up by winning the European Title and successfully defending it on Saturday. Now we’ve made a cracker between Tommy and Chris Billam-Smith for Fight Camp and the winner is going to be perfectly placed to go on and challenge for a World Title.”