British cruiserweight Chris Billam-Smith will be looking to make unheralded Kosovan Armend Xhoxhaj a memory as quickly as possible, when the pair throw down at the Bournemouth International Centre on December 17.
Billam-Smith (16-1, 11 KOs) is coming off an impressive 12-round unanimous decision win over Isaac Chamberlain, which also took place at this very same hometown venue in July. Amid a raucous atmosphere, the Englishman retained his European crown for the third time and he’s now eager for an encore.
“You can’t go anywhere except Bournemouth again, after the experience everyone had,” Billam-Smith told ID Boxing. “It was just an incredible night; the atmosphere was incredible. If I’ve got to headline, I can only headline in Bournemouth.
“We’ve been asking [to fight at home] for years. Finally, someone stepped up to the plate; [Boxxer] delivered the fight, the town delivered the atmosphere, and me and Isaac delivered a cracking fight. It ticked every box.”
The 32-year-old Billam-Smith has a top-10 rating with every governing body: WBC No. 7, WBA No. 4, IBF No. 3 and WBO No. 2. A world title bout is therefore realistic with any of the champions who reside in the 200-pound weight class.
But before Billam-Smith can look to accomplish a lifetime goal, he must first dispose of Xhoxhaj. The German-based Kosovan is coming off a 10-round split decision win over the previously unbeaten Roman Fress, and he’ll be anxious to spring the upset. However, the last time Xhoxhaj took a step up in class, he was blasted out in four rounds by Polish veteran Masteusz Masternak.
Easy work for Billam-Smith or a bump in the road? The Sporting News provides all you need to know ahead of Saturday’s cruiserweight clash.
When is Chris Billam-Smith vs. Armend Xhoxhaj?
- Date: Saturday, December 17
- Start time: 7:00 p.m. GMT | 2:00 p.m. ET
- Main event: 10:00 p.m. GMT | 5:00 p.m. ET
Billam-Smith vs. Xhoxhaj takes place on December 17. The main card starts around 7:00 p.m. GMT | 2:00 p.m. PT.
Billam-Smith and Xhoxhaj should make their way to the ring around 10:00 p.m. GMT | 5:00 p.m., depending on how long the undercard fights last.
How to watch Chris Billam-Smith vs. Armend Xhoxhaj
The main card of Billam-Smith vs. Xhoxhaj will air on Sky Sports in the United Kingdom.
At time of writing, there is no US broadcaster for the fight.
|Country||Date||TV channel||Live streaming|
|United Kingdom||Sat. Dec. 17||Sky Sports||Sky Go, NOW TV|
|United States||Sat. Dec. 17||–||–|
Chris Billam-Smith vs. Armend Xhoxhaj betting odds
Per Sky Bet, Billam-Smith is a prohibitive -2000 (1/20) favourite, while Xhoxhaj is the +1000 (10/1) underdog.
Per William Hill, Billam-Smith is the -1400 (1/14) favourite, while Xhoxhaj is the +700 (7/1) underdog.
Per Sky Bet:
- Billam-Smith via KO/TKO: -350
- Billam-Smith via decision: +300
- Xhoxhaj via KO/TKO: +1200
- Xhoxhaj via decision: +1600
- Draw: +1600
Chris Billam-Smith record and bio
- Nationality: British
- Date of birth: August 2, 1990
- Height: 6ft 3in
- Reach: N/A
- Total fights: 17
- Record: 16-1 (11 KOs)
Armend Xhoxhaj record and bio
- Nationality: Kosovan
- Date of birth: February 10, 1994
- Height: 6ft 1½in
- Reach: 75.5
- Total fights: 16
- Record: 14-2 (7 KOs)
Chris Billam-Smith vs. Armend Xhoxhaj fight card
- Chris Billam-Smith vs. Armend Xhoxhaj, cruiserweights
- Rocky Fielding vs. Dan Azeez, light heavyweights
- Cori Gibbs vs. Jimmy First, lightweights
- Michael McKinson vs. Roberto Arriaza, welterweights
- Caroline Dubois vs. Sofia Rodriguez, lightweights
- Steve Robinson vs. Nick Campbell, heavyweights