Callum Smith battles Christopher Rebrasse for WBC Silver 168lb strap
By Scott Gilfoid: In a little over a week from now, #3 WBC Callum Smith (16-0, 12 KOs) will be battling #11 WBC fringe contender Christopher Rebrasse (23-3-3, 6 KOs) for the vacant WBC Silver super middleweight title on June 26th at the Echo Arena in Liverpool, UK.
Smith, 25, is the younger brother of super middleweight Paul Smith, who will be facing Andre Ward this Saturday night in their 172 pound catch-weight in Oakland, California. Callum has designs of getting a world title shot against the WBC champion in the near future, and he’s really hoping it’ll be George Groves that he faces because he feels it would be a big fight in the UK. Callum also thinks he matches up well with Groves, who has shown in the recent past to have a chin problem.
Smith’s promoters have picked out the perfect guy for him to be fighting in 29-year-old Rebrasse from France. It’s hard to believe that Rebrasse was recently the WBC’s No.1 contender at super middleweight. Just very, very weird and hard to understand when you look at all the other top contenders in the division. Of all the fighters like Sakio Bika, Andre Dirrell, Gilberto Ramirez, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., and Vincent Feigenbutz, the WBC decided that Rebrasse was worthy of being put at No.1.
No sooner had the WBC installed Rebrasse at No.1 with their organization, he was then promptly beaten by Groves in a WBC eliminator. Rebrasse gave a good account of himself in staggering Groves and going the full distance, but he clearly didn’t have the power or the talent to be fighting in an eliminator bout. Neither did Groves, but he was matched up against the perfect guy for him to best in Rebrasse instead of guys that would have likely put him in trouble like Dirrell, Bika, Ramirez, Chavez Jr. and Feigenbutz.
Smith has some recent wins over some pretty mediocre opposition in Olegs Fedotovs, Nikola Sjekloca, Rafael Sosa Pintos and Abraham Hernandez. The thing that I noticed in all of those fights was how easy it was to hit Smith. With his upright fighting style and his tendency to get in close to throw body shots, Smith proved to be very easy to hit in all of those fights. Smith’s fighting style is that of a short fighter, not someone who is 6’3”. That style if obviously going to need to change otherwise I can’t see Smith going anywhere in the division. I mean, I think Smith will beat Groves if/when the time comes, because Groves’ chin isn’t the strongest, but Smith is going to take a beating if he faces Badou Jack and some of the above mentioned contenders in the division.
They’re going to expose him and end his dreams of being a champion. But I suspect that Smith’s promoter won’t let him face anyone good until he gets his title shot. Look at who he’s fighting next in Rebrasse. That kind of gives you a good indication of the path they’re taking with him. After Rebrasse, Smith will be facing Rocky Fielding on September 26th. I wouldn’t be surprised if Smith gets a title shot after that.
Rebrasse bounced back from his loss to Groves in beating little known Istvan Orsos (9-25-2) by a six round unanimous decision last December. Pretty much all of Rebrasse’s wins in his nine year pro career has come against little known opposition. Rebrasse’s one win over a somewhat known fighter was against Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye by a 4th round knockout in 2014. Surprisingly, that victory was enough to give Rebrasse the No.1 ranking with the WBC. I don’t understand it because Al Ndiaye is nothing special at all, and I could see numerous fighters beating him.
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