Updated: Jul 1, 2020
Tony Bellew was born in Liverpool on 30th November 1982. In 2002 and 2003 he took the ABA novice titles by knocking out every opponent he faced, bar Rob Hough. He stepped up to the seniors as a heavyweight, winning three consecutive ABA titles (2004 to 2006) and finished with an amateur record of 40-7 (32 KO's).
He turned pro on 06th October 2007 beating Jamie Ambler in the second round. He went 12-0 and in his thirteenth paid contest challenged Ghana's Atoli Moore for the vacant light-heavyweight Commonwealth title, winning by a first round TKO.
He defeneded it against Bob Ajisafe and Ovill McKenzie. He faced McKenzie again, this time with the vacant British light-heavyweight title on the line as well as Bellew's commonwealth championship. After a twelve round unanimous decision Bellew was a double domestic title holder.
On 15th October 2011 Tony Bellew challenged Welshman Nathan Cleverly for the WBO light-heavyweight title. Both men were undefeated, 22-0 (Cleverly) and 16-0 (Bellew). Cleverly turned pro in July 2005 and picked up the vacant Commonwealth light-heavyweight title from Tony Oakey in his thirteenth contest. In his fourth defence of the championship he added the vacant British crown by defeating Danny McIntosh in the seventh round.
After an eighth round win over Courtney Fry he faced Italian opponent Antonio Brancalion for the vacant European belt, winning by a fifth round TKO. He then faced Karo Murat in a WBO light-heavyweight title eliminator, winning by TKO in the tenth round.
Cleverly then fought Frenchman Nadjib Mohammedi for the Interim WBO lght-heavyweight crown, winning by an unanimous decision. His first defence was against Poland's Aleksy Kuziemski. He stopped the challenger in the fourth round.
Cleverly made his second defence of the crown against Bellew in his home city of Liverpool. Bellew started fast and had the champion in trouble in the second round from his chopping right hand. Cleverly got his jab working in the third and was landing the cleaner shots at the midway point of the fight.
A crunching right cross from the challenger had Cleverly on the ropes. The champion knew he needed a strong final round and finished the contest on the front foot. The bout was action packed but hard to score and Bellew suffered his first defeat with scores of 117-112, 116-113 and 114.
Bellew returned to the ring in April 2012 with a successful defence of his British title. In September he added the vacant WBC International Silver belt to his collection by defeating Edison Miranda in the ninth round. He made three defences before challenging WBC light-heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson.
The title fight took place in Canada on 30th November 2013. The champion had only lost one contest, (which he avenged by knocking out Darnell Boone in the sixth round) in twenty three bouts and sported nineteen knockouts. He knocked out Chad Dawson in the first round to become world champion and forced Travoris Cloud, the former IBF light-heavyweight champion to retire after seven rounds, in his first defence.