MX23RW : Monday, October 15 09:02:17

Tony Bellew convinced he will become undisputed world cruiserweight champion

Tony Bellew convinced he will become undisputed world cruiserweight champion

Tony Bellew is convinced he will "find a way" to defeat "the monster" Oleksandr Usyk and become undisputed world cruiserweight champion.

Bellew challenges unbeaten Ukrainian Usyk – who added the WBA and IBF titles to his WBC and WBO crowns in July by beating Murat Gassiev – on November 10 at Manchester Arena.

The 35-year-old Liverpudlian is returning after two heavyweight victories over David Haye to the division in which he is a former WBC champion.

Bellew said at a press conference in Manchester on Monday, at which he and Usyk posed face to face again having done so at Wembley on Saturday when Anthony Joshua defeated Alexander Povetkin: "Everyone asks why.

"I was on my honeymoon and for one reason or another I stood there watching Oleksandr beat up Murat Gassiev on a mobile phone. The fight stops, and then he makes the ultimate sin – he says my name. And it didn't take long. Soon as he said my name, I knew.

"The world's going to write me off and the more you write me off, the more I want to fight. So we will see.

"I'm going up against the monster, the man who no one really wants to fight, the man who just dismantles fighters and beats them easily.

"There's only one difference when he looks in my eyes. He passed a comment after Saturday's little stare-down – the comment was he thinks I'm arrogant. But it is not arrogance he sees.

"For the first time in his whole career he sees a man looking back at him who believes he can win.

"I don't just think or believe – I know. I'm going to find a way. I always do."

While Bellew (30-2-1, 20 KOs) also described Usyk (15-0, 11 KOs) as an "amazing champion" and a "superstar", he added: "I have the one thing he doesn't have, and that's a punch that can switch lights off within the blink of an eye.

"Just one wrong step, one wrong manoeuvre, and it's over."

He also said to his opponent: "You will have to nail me to the floor to keep me there. And you could do it. You really could. I'm not stupid. But I don't think you can."

When he was asked if it could be the last time for people to see him in a ring before he retires, win, lose or draw, Bellew said: "If I don't stop after this, she (his wife Rachael) is going to divorce me!

"We've only been married a few months. I don't fancy getting divorced, it's not part of the plan.

"She'll probably be watching this. Babe, I promise you this is – maybe – the last one."

Usyk said of Bellew: "I'll tell you why I chose him – because he is the man who takes the biggest challenges.

"He is not the kind of usual boxers who come, see how hard it is and just quit. He will come (and fight) to the end. These kind of fights are something the world wants to see."

Usyk also responded when asked about Bellew's claim that he had punch power that the 31-year-old did not, saying: "He's kidding."

Bellew then said: "We will soon see, my friend, we will soon see. I do not play. I wish I could play games, but I can't."

The undercard on November 10 includes Manchester's former WBA lightweight champion Anthony Crolla facing Daud Yordan of Indonesia in a final eliminator for that title.

:: Unbeaten British welterweight Josh Kelly has been voted 'best young boxer of the year' by the Boxing Writers' Club.

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