Can Kell Brook dethrone Terence Crawford?
Preview for this weekend’s WBO world welterweight title fight
There aren’t many, if any, better pound-for-pound boxers on the planet right now than Terence Crawford.
The unbeaten 33-year-old is the overwhelming 1/14 favourite when he gets in the ring with Kell Brook at the MGM Grand Conference Center in the early hours of Sunday morning.
Brook isn’t short of confidence but he’ll know the odds are stacked against him. Can he pull off a huge shock to win the WBO world welterweight title?
What is Brook up against?
Crawford has a perfect record, winning all 36 of his fights to date, with 27 knockouts. It’s hard to pick just one attribute to explain his success. He can do damage with his lightning-quick hands, catch his opponents out with his counter-punching, or call upon his vast experience to make the right decision in the heat of battle.
He’s not quite as aggressive now as he was in his younger days, but he’s still ruthless in the ring. He tends to find his opponent’s weak spot and exploit it rather than go for one-punch KOs.
Adding to Brooks’ challenge, he’s also had to work tirelessly to make the weight for this weekend’s fight. The Special One hasn’t fought at 147lb since his loss to Errol Spence Jr. in 2017.
How could Crawford be beaten?
While Brook may be out at 7/1 to win the bout, he’s got a very impressive record of his own.
The Sheffield-born boxer has won 39 of his 41 fights, with 27 wins by knockout. His only defeats came in successive fights against two outstanding fighters in Gennady Golovkin and Errol Spence, though he’s bounced back with a hat-trick of wins since then.
He’s been to America and lifted a major belt before, having beaten Shaun Porter for the IBF welterweight title in 2015, which will serve him well ahead of this one.
And although Crawford’s switch-hitting is up there with the very best in the sport, Special K has the size advantage and he may have the edge in terms of pure power too. Crawford hasn’t fought since last December either – the challenger will look to expose any rustiness.
As the underdog, Brook has nothing to lose. His pre-fight comments suggest he wants to come out swinging and overwhelm Crawford. It may be a risky strategy, but one good punch could make the difference.
All odds and markets correct as of date of publication.