Tony Bellew (25-2-1) will be squaring off against Mateusz Masternak (36-3) on the undercard of the Anthony Joshua vs. Dillian Whyte bout at the O2 Arena in London, UK.
Eddie Hearn, Bellew’s promoter, told IFL TV “Tony Bellew wanted a real fight, and Masternak is a real fighter, and that card [on December 12th] is getting bigger, bigger and bigger.”
Masternak is ranked in the top 15 at cruiserweight by the WBC, WBO, IBF and the WBA. He is a definite step up from the competition Bellew has faced since moving up to cruiserweight. However, a bout against Oleksandr Usyk, Grigory Drozd, Marco Huck or Krzysztof Glowacki would have been a much bigger test for Bellew.
Perhaps this is a stop-gap on the way to a title bout with IBF cruiserweight champion Victor Emilio Ramirez. The same Ramirez who was lucky to escape with his title when his bout with Ovill McKenzie in October was judged a draw.
While such matchup would be Bellew’s best shot at a winning a title it may never come to fruition. Ramirez is currently chasing a rematch with Marco Huck, who beat him by unanimous decision in 2009.
Tickets for the Bad Intentions card, on which the bout will feature are available via Stubhub.co.uk