Smith gets rematch with WBO champion Abraham
Paul Smith (35-4, 20 KOs) will face WBO super-middleweight champion Arthur Abraham (41-4, 28 KOs) in a rematch on February 21 at the O2 World arena in Berlin, Germany.
The Liverpudlian suffered a points defeat against Abraham in September, but in what was a highly competitive fight was not reflected by the scorecards, with the German receiving wide margins of 119-109, 117-111 and 117-111.
Although giving Abraham the victory was not controversial, many felt the scorecards was. Even WBO president Francisco "Paco" Valcarcel was publicly critical of Spanish judge Fernando Laguna's 119-109 score, which means he gave Smith only one round.
The sanctioning body declined to order an immediate rematch, but that did not prevent the camps from making a deal for an optional defence and ‘King Arthur’ has agreed to the return bout.
"I'm a man of my word," Abraham said. "I promised Paul that I would give him a rematch after our first fight in Kiel. I will honor that promise. However, Paul should be careful what he wishes for. I've already beaten him once and this time I plan to win in even more spectacular fashion. On February 21, I will knock him out."
"Arthur and his trainer said he would stop me in the first fight," Smith said. "We all saw what happened there. It was only with the judges' help that he beat me. I believe I won the fight. This time, I know I can beat him."