NATHAN Cleverly believes next Saturday’s showdown with Badou Jack on the Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor undercard in Las Vegas could be “the real fight of the night”.

Cefn Fforest’s Cleverly makes the first defence of his WBA world light-heavyweight crown when he faces the dangerous Jack at the T-Mobile Arena.

The bout is the chief support to the much-hyped battle between unbeaten legend of the sport Mayweather and MMA superstar McGregor, who has never boxed.

Boxing fans have slammed the multi-million dollar main event as nothing more than a circus, with many insisting they will not be stumping up the cash to watch on pay-per-view television.

Those who do tune in may well see Cleverly and Sweden-born Jack deliver a real barnstormer – Jack is stepping up to light-heavyweight for the first time on the night.

“Myself and Jack are two genuine world-class operators who will be putting it on the line,” said two-time world champion Cleverly.

“This could be the real fight of the night and I’m looking to capitalise on that.

“The magnitude of this event and the scale of it is massive, and we’re privileged to be the main support to it.

“It’s a great opportunity for me to be a part of this show.”

When the Welshman, 30, steps into the ring in Las Vegas it will be more than 10 months since he took the WBA title from Juergen Braehmer.

That stoppage success came nearly a whole year after his previous bout, a defeat to Andrzej Fonfara in Chicago.

But Cleverly isn’t worried about a second successive long gap between fights, and he reckons that Jack’s inexperience at light-heavyweight will help him defend his strap on August 26.

“He is a top-class operator, consistently fighting at world level,” he added.

“This is Jack’s first fight at light-heavyweight and it’s against a seasoned campaigner at that weight – he will realise that when he gets in the ring.

“I know it’s only half-a-stone but it’s going to make a difference.”

Meanwhile, Cleverly reckons Irishman McGregor doesn’t deserve the chance to take on Mayweather given the former’s complete lack of boxing pedigree.

However, he does give McGregor credit for both the work he has done in the gym and his efforts in promoting the show, although Cleverly can only see one winner.

He said: “Does McGregor deserve the opportunity to box Mayweather? No. But you can’t blame him for making it happen.

“Fair play to the guys for the work they have put in at the gym and outside it as well.

“I don’t believe an upset is on the cards but well done to McGregor for making it happen.”