Boxng history beckons for Sheffield-based world title hunter Charlie Edwards

Charlie Edwards
Charlie Edwards

Charlie Edwards can open up a new chapter in boxing history on Saturday - and bring the treasured WBC belt back to Sheffield.

The Steel City gym boxer takes on the holder of the flyweight world title Cristofer Rosales, on the undercard of Dillian Whyte v Dereck Chisora at the O2 Arena, London.

The Beighton based fighter is hoping to do better than his last world title tilt, when he lost the IBF version of the flyweight title to John Riel Casimero at same venue.

Trainer Grant Smith says there is no comparison between Edwards now and when he fought Casimero, at the age of 23.

"Charlie is a totally different fighter now," he said,

"Everybody saw when he boxed Anthony Nelson (June, Newcastle) how he has developed.

"Before he was fast on his feet in and out throwing loads of punches - now he has settled down and knows when to do stuff and when not to. He is brilliant to coach, a true professional, 100%...I have to tell him not to train - he'd do it 24 hours a day if I let him."

Edwards has been in just 14 professional fights, but is used to big arena battles.

"Charlie has been in a lot of big shows, it is not his first time in such an atmosphere," said Smith.

"Of course it can be a daunting experience for anyone, but he's been in nerve-wracking situations before.

"If he wins it will be life-changing. There is no other WBC world champion in Britain. Everybody knows what the green belt stands for.

"Ricky Hatton got the chance to box the pound for pound best Kostya Tszyu (2005 IBF super lightweight title), he was in a similar position, and it is a big ask.

"But it changed Ricky's life and this will change Charlies. And he's only 25."

Smith acknowledges it will be a tough night for his man.

"Rosales is the number one rated flyweight in the world. A very good fighter and a big puncher.

"He throws throwing underneath, over the top, walks you down and keeps throwing. Charlie will have to use his intelligence and ring craft."

Edwards has been sparring with Doncaster's Tom Bell and Frenchman Karim Guerfi, who was an IBO world title contender this year.

There is a re-match clause if Rosales is beaten.