Domestically the super welterweight division is one littered with talent. Fighters such as Ted Cheeseman, Anthony Fowler, Scott Fitzgerald, Sam Eggington and Kell Brook all currently reside in the 154lb weight class.
With Sam Eggington and Ted Cheeseman putting on a phenomenal war in Fight Camp week one and Anthony Fowler putting on a career-best performance in stopping Adam Harper in seven last Friday night, excitement has never been higher in the division. One fighter hungry to get it on with any of the big names is unbeaten Darlington native Troy Williamson (14-0-1 KO 11).
Williamson is looking to make a statement in the BT Sport studios this Saturday night on the undercard of Carl Frampton's return to the ring but has been frustrated with many opponents coming and going and nobody being named yet.
“I’ve heard that many opponents some have dropped out, some have not taken the fight for whatever reason and I’m still waiting and it’s quite frustrating I’m putting everything into training and my weights bang on and like I say there’s still no opponent and this has happened in my past 3 or 4 fights.”
Williamson admits that whilst it is frustrating having an opponent pull out, it does not affect his preparation.
“It’s not ideal. You train for one person, you get offered someone else and they pull out, it doesn’t really affect anything, my minds fully focused on I am boxing, training hard and keep my mind right and whoever I’m facing on the night I’ll be very ready for obviously very confident that I will win the fight because I’ve put the work in.”
Williamson says it is a worry that he may not even end up boxing on the card if a fighter does not step in.
“It’s just frustrating because we’re so close to fight night and we still don’t have an opponent. You don’t know do you, I might not box, obviously fingers crossed that they get me an opponent and I do box but there’s nothing guaranteed yet.”
The Trojan picked up his first professional title before lockdown defeating Dario Socci by tenth round TKO to pick up the IBF European title, Williamson does not believe the pandemic halted his momentum.
“No, I think it was more not being able to go to the gym, I was training from home doing my runs and a little bit of cycling but now we’ve been in the full swing of things for weeks now I’ve been back in the boxing gym, other gyms are opening and the running tracks back open so I’m raring to go and motivated as I can be.”
Williamson has been sparring former British title challenger Kieron Conway in the run-up to this fight and says that Kieron is a great talent.
“It’s very competitive sparring, Kieron and I are at the same sort of stage of our career, he boxed Ted Cheeseman for the British title which I thought he was unlucky to get a draw out of if I’m completely honest. I thought Kieron just nicked it and he was basically a novice at the time that was the first time he stepped up really and he’s a great talent, young, hungry and will go on to do great things.”
The twenty-eight-year-old believes that no Queensbury fighter want’s to get in the ring with him but feels that Matchroom fighters will.
“In the Frank Warren stable, I don’t think any Super Welterweight wants to fight me. The Matchroom fighters are all fighting each other and obviously Warren fighters don’t fight Hearn fighters which I don’t understand. It seems that unless you’re in a mandatory position, you don’t get the fight so I’m not going to be able to box Cheeseman next for example. Annoyingly, Matchroom fighters fight each other but Queensbury Super Welterweights don’t want to fight.”
“I’m sure Anthony Fowler would box me, Ted Cheeseman would box me, all these fighters would box me, why wouldn’t they? It’s a crazy one, but when my time comes it comes.”
With the big news, last week of a potential working relationship between Frank Warren and Eddie Hearn in the future all Williamson wants is a crack at the Lonsdale belt.
“I just want the British title that’s every British boxers dream. I know Scott Fitzgerald has got that at the minute and I know a lot of people are saying that he’s been stripped or the British boxing board of control has taken his license off him but I haven’t seen that be put into writing by anybody I’ve just heard that from the casual fans. However, if that is the case then it will become vacant and I’d love to box for that it doesn’t matter who against.”
If Fitzgerald is not stripped of his British title than Williamson predicts a fantastic fight between the pair.
“It would be an unbelievable fight especially for fight fans it’s one I’m confident of winning, we’ve done plenty of rounds sparring me and Scott and they were very, very exciting rounds, I love his style and he’s a great kid and a nice person it’s a bit of shame that he’s gone down the road he’s gone and hopefully he pulls himself right because he’s genuinely a nice guy but if we fight we’ll put friendship aside until after the bell.”
Williamson did watch the Cheeseman vs Eggington main event from week one of fight camp and thought it was a good performance from both.
“I thought it was a very good fight, a good performance from both. It was probably the best I’ve seen Eggington in a long time, to be honest, everyone knows what Ted brings, he can dig deep when he needs too and he can actually box, he’s a better boxer then what most people think he is but he can actually dig deep and fight when he needs to fight obviously it showed against Eggington, I think it was a great fight, I enjoyed it anyway.”
Super Welterweight is a cesspool of great talent domestically and Williamson is eager to share the ring with the big names.
“I’ll fight the big names, if I’m completely honest I’m getting quite sick of saying I’ll fight anybody because people might just think I’m just saying it but I will honestly fight any domestic super welterweight in the country and I’m very confident of beating any of them. I just need the opportunity, from the North East of England you don’t really get the recognition but there are some very good fighters up here but we don’t get the recognition of the big cities. I just need the opportunity - I will show everyone that I back my words up and people will get to see just how good I really am.”
Williamson always comes to fight and tells the fans to tune in for some more action this Saturday night.
“Fans can expect excitement, I always bring excitement, I’ve got a fan-friendly style so just tune into BT Sport on the 15th of August and you’ll get to see what I’m all about.”