Hamzah Sheeraz vs Austin ‘Ammo’ Williams: A 5v5 Masterstroke

By Tommy G Robins - 05/01/2024 - Comments

The Matchroom versus Queensberry undercard, scheduled under the Beterbiev/Bivol clash on June 1st has been the talk of the boxing community since its announcement. Fights such as Raymond Ford against Nick Ball and Filip Hirgovic against Daniel Dubois have dominated online discourse – quite rightly so – in regards to the Riyahd Season event. The card begins at 8 p.m. ET / 1 a.m. UK with the main event set to begin at 11 p.m. ET / 4 a.m.

However, the fight between Queensberry’s team captain Hamzah Sheeraz and Matchroom’s golden middleweight Austin ‘Ammo’ Williams is set to be a titanic clash of two burgeoning talents, caught at the crossroads of success in a division crying out for more talent. It also represents the change in the boxing landscape, with Queensberry’s home-grown talent put up against Matchroom’s global dominance.

Sheeraz, born in Ilford in 1999, stands at 6‘3 and, combined with his silhouette, has drawn comparisons – particularly from promoter Frank Warren – to the legendary Tommy ‘Hitman’ Hearns. His jab, often thrown with his dominant hand, is arguably the best in the division right now – besting the solid regional talent Liam Williams in one round. The 24 year old has been looking for the big fights consistently, with the over-rated yet well-known Chris Eubank Jr. being a name floated around by Warren. He is undefeated in 19 bouts and currently holds the WBC Silver Middleweight title and the Commonwealth Middleweight title.

Across the pond, Austin Williams was born in Houston in 1996. The 27 year old has slightly more experience than the British-Pakistani Sheeraz, which more than makes up for his smaller stature, at 6 ‘0 and smaller reach. Coming from a rich amateur background, ‘Ammo’ was a Team USA member and earned a variety of accolades. A slippery southpaw with slickness in abundance, Williams will provide Sheeraz with problems and questions in equal measure. With a professional record of 16-0, his amateur experience and quality of opposition has been stronger than that of Sheeraz. He is the current holder of the IBF North American Middleweight strap.

This bout will prove to be completely 50/50 and highly contentious, with Sheeraz and Williams both bursting onto the scene as future world champions, in a division with only one true champion – current IBF and WBO World Middleweight titleholder Zhanibek Alimkhanuly.

With Erislandy Lara in his early 40’s and Jermall Charlo MIA in boxing, the division is looking to open-up massively, with Sheeraz and Williams both equipped with the necessary talent to fill the void. Quite frankly, this might not be the only time these fighters face one another – hopefully, a rematch with a belt will be on the cards, in their futures.

One can’t help but recall Groves vs DeGale when looking at this match-up; two fighters early in their careers, putting it all on the line to provide an entertaining and blistering match-up. And, much like those two, the stock of these fighters can only rise – win, lose or draw.