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Artur Beterbiev vs Callum Smith official for August 19 in Quebec City

Artur Beterbiev will face Callum Smith in August on ESPN.

Artur Beterbiev will face Callum Smith in Quebec in August
Artur Beterbiev will face Callum Smith in Quebec in August

Artur Beterbiev will defend his light heavyweight belts against Callum Smith on Saturday, Aug. 19, at Videotron Centre in Quebec City.

The WBC ordered the fight in March, with Smith as Beterbiev’s mandatory challenger with that sanctioning body. Beterbiev also holds the IBF and WBO titles, which will also be on the line.

Top Rank won a purse bid over Matchroom, Smith’s promoter, in early May.

Beterbiev (19-0, 19 KO) looked about as devastating as ever when he went to London in January and stopped a very game Anthony Yarde in the eighth round, but he is 38 years old.

Smith (29-1, 21 KO) is a former super middleweight titleholder who has beaten Gilberto Castillo and Mathieu Bauderlique following his move up to 175 in 2021, which came after a one-sided beating at the hands of Canelo Alvarez.

Smith, 33, will have significant height and reach advantages, but in all honesty he had those against Canelo, too, and he just didn’t show a whole lot against an elite tier fighter. This is a chance for him to shoot right to the top of the 175 lb ranks alongside WBA titlist Dmitry Bivol.

Beterbiev, who has lived in Quebec for years, hasn’t fought there since 2015.

“Quebec is my second home, so I’m very happy to finally defend my titles on home turf,” he said. “When you’re world champion, everyone wants the opportunity to take your belt, and that’s especially true in my case, with three titles at stake. I’ve already started my training camp and I’ll be ready to not only defend my belt, but also to put on an impressive show.”

Smith has no issue taking the road fight.

“Having boxed abroad on many occasions, including in Saudi Arabia and the United States, I didn’t hesitate for a second when I was given the opportunity to fight Beterbiev in Quebec,” he said. “This is my chance to become world champion of two divisions, and I fully intend to bring the belts home with me to Liverpool.”

Already confirmed for the undercard: Super middleweight contender Christian Mbilli (24-0, 20 KO) will be in action, as will Simon Kean, Wilkens Mathieu, Leila Beaudoin, and Clovis Drolet.

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