CEFN Fforest’s former world champion Nathan Cleverly appears to be on a collision course with old foe Tony Bellew with a rematch between the pair looking increasingly likely.
Bellew addressed his old rival after defeating Valery Brudov on Saturday night in what was his debut in the cruiserweight division having made the step up from light-heavyweight which Cleverly has also done in a bid to restart his career.
Cleverly, who lost his WBO light heavyweight title last year, is also planning to resume at the cruiserweight limit and had previously said he wouldn’t rule out a clash with Bellew, who he defeated in Liverpool in October, 2011.
“I am sick of hearing about his maths degree and him changing trainers every five minutes. Just fight. That's what we are supposed to do, I am sick of talking about it,” Bellew said in a televised interview.
Cleverly was apparently tuning in as he responded on Twitter with no intention of calming the situation.
“I hear some gobs***e mugging me off on Sky Sports last night. Gloves back on soon. I may even give that mouthpiece ANOTHER spanking,” he said.
Bellew responded: “Mugging you off? I say it how it is! I get in a ring and fight; I suggest you do the same thing. Stop the talking! Let’s do it!”
Cleverly again responded: “Concentrate on your own career kid. I will be back. You can have another crack at me. Show more respect next time I beat you, big man.”
With both men harbouring title ambitions at cruiserweight level, it appears to be a mere formality that they will meet again in the ring to settle their differences.
Saturday wasn’t the first time Bellew has launched a tirade at Cleverly.
He's the only person in boxing I truly despise. I don't like Adonis Stevenson as a person but he's a great fighter whereas I just despise the other fella on every level. I detest him. The way he looks at me, looking down his nose, thinking he's something he's not," Bellew said last month.
"He's a fraud. He doesn't even want to be a boxer. If I have to go through him to get a world title fight then so be it. I'm happy to do it.
"I basically had to beg for the rematch after the first fight and was told 'no'. Everyone knows how much I wanted it - and how much he didn't want it.
"Now he has nowhere to go. He sells about 10 tickets in his hometown while in Liverpool we can sell 10,000. I believe he needs me now and I don't need him. But with my attitude towards him, I'd love nothing more than to give him a good hiding."