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Bellew poised to be ranked No. 1

ESPN staff
February 5, 2013 « White tells Edgar: Don't go back to 155lbs | Chartbeat test »
Tony Bellew has only lost once in 20 career fights © PA Photos
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Light-heavyweight Tony Bellew is set to receive a boost to his confidence ahead of his final world title eliminator against Isaac Chilemba by being bumped up to No. 1 in the WBC's rankings.

The 30-year-old's promoters, Matchroom Sport, claimed their man had been moved up from No. 2 on Tuesday however he is yet to officially top the list on the sanctioning body's website.

The current No. 1 at 175lbs is Eduard Gutknecht but after his loss to Juergen Braehmer on Saturday, Bellew should be confirmed as the new top-ranked fighter in the coming days.

Bellew will enter the ring against Malawian Chilemba, who is ranked at No. 4, on March 30 at the Echo Arena in Liverpool. Should he come through he will have the right to fight for the WBC belt against the winner of Chad Dawson, who currently holds the title, and Jean Pascal - the pair are fighting each other on May 25 in Montreal.

"Tony has the world at his feet right now," Eddie Hearn, Bellew's promoter, said. "All Tony has to do is get through Isaac Chilemba and he will get that shot at Dawson or Pascal.

"I say all he has to do but Chilemba will pose a huge test and has the same opportunities. It's a big test for Tony and the rewards are huge."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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