Boxing

Tommy McCarthy will win rematch against McGuigan-trained Chris Billam-Smith says Pete Taylor

Tommy McCarthy lost to Chris Billam-Smith by split decision last year

TOMMY McCarthy's rematch with Chris Billam-Smith was confirmed for Manchester Arena on April 16 yesterday and McCarthy's trainer Pete Taylor expects the Lenadoon cruiserweight to avenge last summer's controversial defeat.

McCarthy, who had Carl Frampton in his corner and will include him again next month, lost to Shane McGuigan-trained Billam-Smith on a debatable split-decision.

“It should be a good fight and you'll see a better version of Tommy,” said Taylor.

“Tommy fought at 70 per cent of his capabilities in the last fight and Billam-Smith was at 100 per cent, so I don't think Billam-Smith can change but Tommy can.

“I'm surprised Billam-Smith has taken the fight and fair play to him. Not many people would have taken it so fair dues to him and the McGuigans for taking it.”

The fact that the McGuigans have taken the rematch – Barry was a vocal presence at ringside during the first encounter – obviously means they are confident of a second win. Taylor insists that McCarthy will settle the score on the undercard of Conor Benn versus Chris van Heerden.

“Tommy fought within himself the last time and we were all disappointed with his performance and no-one more than Tommy himself,” he said.

“You'll see an improved performance. He trained hard for the last fight but he left too many subjective rounds and he won't do that this time. He knows he can't afford to.”

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access

Boxing