British middleweight champion Liam Williams gets the opportunity to become the WBO's #1 middleweight contender to champion Demetrius Andrade when he meets Alantez Fox (26-1-1, 12 Ko's) who hails from Upper Marlboro, Maryland, USA. The pair meet on Frank Warrens aptly named "The Fight Before Christmas" show at the Copperbox Arena in Hackney Wick, East London on Saturday 21st December. The show is headlined by rising heavyweight star Daniel Dubois who fights Japan's, Kyotaro Fujimoto. The show will be televised in the UK by BT Sports and streamed by ESPN++ in the USA.
Williams's recent form indicates that he is currently operating at his peak. Aged 27, the Welshman (21-2-1, 16 Ko's) has shown world-class boxing skills and the punching power to go with it since moving up from super-welterweight where he reigned as British, Commonwealth, and WBO European champion.
As the fight takes place in the UK, it will be a tough task for Fox whose only previous loss was on points to Andrade in a 12 round non-title bout in Verona, New York in 2017.
At 6ft 4In, Fox will make for an awkward opponent for the 5ft 10In Williams but the much-improved native of Clydach Vale has the footwork and guile to overcome that awkwardness.
Fox was awarded a 7th round knockdown against Andrade in their fight but while a long right-uppercut seemed to land to the chest, it also appeared that Andrade's feet were square and he was badly off balance. Regardless, Fox has 12 stoppages in his 28 fight record but does not carry the same degree of power Williams does.
William's two losses were to former WBO world super-welterweight champion Liam "Beefy" Smith in 2017 and seem to have been the catalyst to the Welshman's move up in weight and much-improved skill set. Training under Dominic Ingle at the Wincobank Gym in Sheffield has also had a positive effect. Ingle has taken his father Brendan's place as one of the sport's leading trainers.
Everything I see in this fight is in William's favour. I think Fox is an awkward guy to face and I think he will have his moments but for Williams, this opportunity has landed at the right time. I have always admired Frank Warren's timing when progressing a prospect. I have felt like criticising some of his matches in the past (holding back a young fighter) but ultimately he gets it right way more often than not. This is a fight for Williams to win.
Prediction: Williams to become the first to stop Fox, around the 8 -10 round mark.