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Callum Smith says his 'best version' will KO Artur Beterbiev in light-heavyweight world title fight

Callum Smith came face-to-face with world champion Artur Beterbiev on Thursday for the first time during fight week; watch Beterbiev vs Smith live on Sky Sports in the early hours of Sunday morning, with the undercard action starting at 1am

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Artur Beterbiev fixed Callum Smith with an icy glare throughout the press conference head to head in Quebec.

Callum Smith says he will knock Artur Beterbiev out in their light-heavyweight world title fight if he can produce the "best version" of himself.

Smith has the opportunity to become a two-weight world champion when he gets his shot at Beterbiev's IBF, WBC and WBO titles in the early hours on Sunday morning, live on Sky Sports.

The unbeaten Beterbiev has won all 19 of professional bouts by knockout, but Smith (29-1), who in 2020 suffered the only defeat of his career to Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez, is confident of causing an upset in Quebec.

"I'm a big believer in my own ability, I know how good I am, I know how good I can be, and providing the best version of me turns up, I believe I beat anyone on the planet," Smith told Sky Sports after going head-to-head with Beterbeiv at the final press conference on Thursday.

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Callum Smith says anyone expecting a repeat of his Canelo performance is in for a shock and he's confident of knocking out Artur Beterbiev in front of his Canadian fans.

"I've backed that up a lot of times before. Obviously I had the one slip in my career, but the best version of me knocks the best version of Artur Beterbiev out.

"I'm doing everything I can in camp to make sure the best version of me turns up. I've always had that focus not to worry too much about my opponent and let them worry about me."

Neither fighter gave much away as they came face-to-face for the first time in fight week, but Smith said the intense stare down had increased his focus.

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Liam Smith is optimistic his brother Callum can cause an upset against fearsome light-heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev this weekend.

"I don't think you're going to win a fight by intimidating an someone like that in a head-to-head, especially at this level where everyone's been there and done it before," the Brit said.

"It's always good to see your opponent in the flesh. The last time I saw him was in July-August for the press conference. So it's good to get a feel, it gets you mentally that little bit more switched on."

McGirt: 'Underrated' Smith is not worried

Following his defeat to Alvarez, Smith moved to the US to join up with trainer Buddy McGirt, who has guided him to KO victories in both of their fights working together.

While both McGirt and Smith acknowledged Beterbiev's pedigree, the American insisted that there is no fear in their camp.

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Ahead of Callum Smith's much-anticipated clash with Artur Beterbiev this weekend, relive how Brits have fared previously against some of the best pound-for-pound fighters of their generation.

"I think he (Smith) is very underrated," McGirt said. "I think a lot of people underestimate him and he's going to showcase what he can really do on Saturday night.

"You can't go in the fight thinking about his record. We know what's in front of us, we're not stupid, we know that it's a tough task and we're prepared for it.

"If you're worried about all that, you're in the wrong business. So we know what's in front of us, we know what's coming at us, well Callum knows. When the bell rings, he takes three steps in, I take three steps out.

"We're prepared. Right now it's just about him going in there and handling his business on Saturday night."

Watch Artur Beterbiev vs Callum Smith live on Sky Sports Arena and Main Event from 1am on Sunday. Stream live boxing on Sky Sports with NOW.

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