Sunderland Echo - - Sport -

Sun­der­land box­ing su­per­star Josh Kelly hopes David Avanesyan comes to fight - if so, the Com­mon­wealth wel­ter­weight cham­pion knows it will play right into his hands.

Kelly pro­vides one of the main sup­ports on a stacked card of box­ing down in Sh­effield to­mor­row night, with Kell Brook against Michael Zer­afa pro­vid­ing the main event.

And Kelly, back out af­ter just four weeks rest, thinks there could be fire­works against the Rus­sian for­mer world ti­tle chal­lenger.

“I feel Satur­day night I want to go in there and put a per­for­mance on,” Kelly told Sky Sports.

“I need some­one to come and re­ally try to take my head off - that’s why I am here.

“When I get in the ring, a lot of peo­ple want to take my head off, be­cause I look like an ar­ro­gant sort of guy, but I’ve got a switch when I go into the ring. I’m not the same guy out­side as I am in.”

Kelly takes on ex­pe­ri­enced cam­paign Avanesyan, trained in Not­ting­hamshire by Carl Greaves, de­spite this be­ing only his ninth pro­fes­sional bout.

Avanesyan went the full 12 rounds with La­mont Peter­son, los­ing his WBA ti­tle chal­lenge on points in 2017.

“It’s been four weeks since the last fight, so I’ve had a quick turn­around and I’m feel­ing fresh,” said Kelly, who last time out scored a KO of Wal­ter Fabian Castillo in Manch­ester.

“If he comes to fight, it’s go­ing to be a good night, and a night to en­joy.

“When this fight hap­pens, when the de­ci­sion gets made, then I think a lot of peo­ple will be sur­prised the way the fight has went.

“Stylis­ti­cally I’m ready for this sort of fight. It’s the typ­i­cal boxer against a fighter. If he comes to fight, it’s go­ing to be a good night, and a night to en­joy.”

Mean­while, Kell Brook has launched a ver­bal at­tack on Amir Khan as he pre­pares for to­mor­row’s su­per-wel­ter­weight fight against Aus­tralian Michael Zer­afa.

York­shire­man Brook is frus­trated at what he sees as Khan’s re­luc­tance for a show­down be­tween them to take place.

And he vented his feel­ings dur­ing a press con­fer­ence in Sh­effield ahead of a fi­nal elim­i­na­tor for the WBA su­per-wel­ter­weight world ti­tle this week­end.

In­stead of fac­ing Brook, Khan has now been linked to tak­ing on Ter­ence Craw­ford - much to Brook’s an­noy­ance.

“I’m do­ing ev­ery­thing I can for the fans, he has turned his back on them. Ev­ery­one knows it’s him that is run­ning off,” Brook said, in com­ments re­ported by Sky Sports’ of­fi­cial web­site.

“Amir Khan is a con man, they should call him Amir ‘con’. This is his last big fight un­der Match­room, and I thought it was nailed on.

“He shook my hand and looked me dead in the eye and said we would fight next. What can I do? I’ve bent over back­wards.

“I want any elite fighter. I’ve got that buzz again. I want the top guys.

“In train­ing, we are get­ting all the hard work done and hav­ing a good crack in be­tween. Camp could not have gone any bet­ter. I’m rar­ing to go.

“I am not in­ter­ested in what Zer­afa’s go­ing to do, I am go­ing to be 100 per cent. No man can deal with me on Satur­day night. I’m very ex­plo­sive and look­ing to put on a se­ri­ous per­for­mance.”

Zer­afa, though, has only lost twice dur­ing his pro­fes­sional ca­reer, and he is ready to take his op­por­tu­nity against Brook at the Sh­effield Arena.

Josh Kelly, left, and David Avanesyan go face to face ahead of their show­down in Sh­effield.

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