Denzel Bentley-Kieran Smith Set For British Middleweight Title In Scotland
Per the BBBofC’s latest circular, Denzel Bentley (17-2-1, 14 KOs) will defend his British Middleweight championship against Scotland’s Kieran Smith (18-1, 7 KOs) on a Frank Warren/Queensberry Promotions show that will take place on the 15th of April in Scotland. The venue was not confirmed.
EDIT: NoSmokeBoxing has been informed by Smith’s manager Sam Kynoch that the circular is wrong about the location and that the contest will take place in London, not Scotland.
Bentley’s contest with Smith will be a voluntary defence and the second time he puts his Lonsdale crown on the line. Bentley won the title with a split decision over Linus Udofia last May and in his sole defence stopped Marcus Morrison in 4 rounds in September. The mandatory challenger for the belt is expected to arise from the winner of Tyler Denny and Brad Pauls on Feb 11.
Bentley was given a surprising world title opportunity against Kazakhstan’s Janibek Alimkhanuly in November which he took with both hands even though most pundits didn’t give him a remote chance. Although the Londoner was beaten on points, he put up an impressive challenge and a performance that definitively puts him above domestic level.
Smith’s most important outing to date came in a British title final eliminator against Troy Williamson in April 2021 where the majority of fans had Smith winning comfortably through 5 rounds until the power of Williamson ended the fight in an instant in the sixth.
Outside this, Smith hasn’t had any fights on major platforms and there is an element of intrigue in how this matchup will play out, although Bentley will enter as a strong favourite and fans will see this as a ‘comeback fight’ after the defeat to Alimkhanuly.