Boxing Tips: 4 belting bets for Saturday’s boxing in Eddie Hearn’s back garden

Our tipster Matt Gipon's knockout punts.

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*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at the time of publication but subject to change.

We’re returning to Eddie Hearn’s back garden for another summer of Matchroom Fight Camps, but this year, if you’re rich or well-connected enough, you can get tickets to the events starting this Saturday – and if you’re not on the guest list you can watch on DAZN like the rest of us.

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The headline act was supposed to feature crowd favourite Conor Benn facing the gritty Mexican-American Adrian Granados, but the British boxer has been ruled out following a positive Covid test on Friday and that bout is now postponed. The means the main event now features a world title bout between Can Xu and Leigh Wood, on the undercard we have a fight for European honours when Tommy McCarthy takes on Chris Billiam-Smith, and a host of other top names from the British boxing scene.

Can Xu V Leigh Wood – Wood to win

Uncle Eddie has delivered a huge fight for Leigh Wood this Saturday. Chinese featherweight world champion Can Xu is bringing his belt to Essex to get a taste of a Matchroom boxing event on British soil, and he thinks he found an easy mark in a man who’s been bobbing around at European level, but the Englishman has a shot at a beatable champion.

Xu was supposed to come to this side of the world a couple of years ago to unify titles against Leeds’ world champion Josh Warrington, but the fighter from Fuzhou made his excuses and went to America to take on some fairly-unknown opposition.

‘The Monster’ is known for his size and output but he’s only scored three KO wins in 21 bouts, and his record is padded with inexperienced opponents and challengers who have moved up in weight. I think this fight will go the distance, and with Woods’ fast hands and power I think the overlooked Nottingham man has enough to nick a win.

Chris Billam Smith v Tommy McCarthy – Billam-Smith by KO

In the cruiserweight division the scrap for European, Commonwealth and British titles promises to be a humdinger. Belfast’s Tommy McCarthy brings the European strap, Bournemouth’s Chris Billam-Smith brings the Commonwealth bauble and the British belt is a vacant cherry on top.

McCarthy is the more experienced man and is a solid all-rounder at 200 pounds, but ‘The Gentleman’ seems to have a bit more in all departments, especially power. Billiam-Smith has stopped 77% of his rivals and McCarthy has been KO’d once before – I think the Englishman takes home the titles before the end of 12 rounds.

Anthony Fowler v Rico Mueller – Fowler by KO

Britain’s super welterweight hope Anthony Fowler has a late replacement for this weekend’s event in the shape of veteran German Rico Mueller. Fowler is looking to move into world title contention in the next year or so and I think he’ll stop his aging and undersized opponent with a Fowler KO.

Jack Cullen v Avni Yildirim – Yildirim by KO

Potential fight-of-the-night is coming early in the evening, when Turkey’s former title challenger Avni Yildirim meets ‘Little Lever’s Meat Cleaver’ Jack Cullen in the super middleweight division. Cullen is a rangey, all-action fighter but I don’t think he’ll be able to hold off the stronger, more experienced man. Yildirim to win by KO kicks off the night.

Saturday’s boxing tips

Can Xu V Leigh Wood – Wood to win
Chris Billam Smith v Tommy McCarthy – Billam-Smith by KO
Anthony Fowler v Rico Mueller – Fowler by KO
Jack Cullen v Avni Yildirim – Yildirim by KO

*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at the time of publication but subject to change.

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