Tommy Langford helps Callum Smith prepare for title clash

Ringside 01/09/2017

Craig Birch

‘The Baggies Bomber’ Tommy Langford and Callum Smith have renewed acquaintances in the ring as they prepare for their title tests ahead.

The two have been sparring at Joe Gallagher’s gym in Manchester as Smith prepares for the World Boxing Super Series, writes Craig Birch.

Scouser Smith is a part of the eight-man knockout tournament, where the upcoming quarter-finals will then see the winners progress to semis and finals in 2018.

The final will see the WBA super middleweight crown contested, as current champion George Groves has chucked his belt into the competition.

Smith gets going against the also undefeated Erik Skoglund on September 16 at the Echo Arena in Liverpool.

Langford is waiting on a date for a first defence of the British middleweight title, with Jack Arnfield ordered to be his challenger by the British Boxing Board of Control.

The fighting pride of West Bromwich Albion supporters and Baggies nut himself holds a victory over Smith, too, from when the two were amateurs.

Langford will be looking to bounce back from an unsuccessful tilt at WBA interim world honours, where he was was halted in five rounds against Avtandil Khurtsidze.

It was the first pro defeat after 18 straight wins and six TKOs for the Devon-born Brummie, who has also lifted Commonwealth and WBO Inter-Continental straps.

The 28-year-old began life in Bideford, but settled in Birmingham as a teenager. His dad, David, was born in Dudley and he still has family in the Black Country.

Premier League club Albion regularly show their support for him through their media channels and allow him to use their training facilities.

He’s known to most of the players as he’s a match programme columnist and a regular on match-days, as he’s a season ticket holder.

He attended his first game at the Hawthorns on 5 April 1999, aged nine, where the home side were hammered 5-1 by Crewe in what is now the Championship.