• Light-heavyweight

Bellew a 'step closer' to title shot

ESPN staff
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Tony Bellew has ben beaten only once as a professional © PA Photos
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Tony Bellew feels he could be just one fight away from a shot at a world title, but is aware of the need no to overlook Isaac Chilemba.

Bellew recently became the WBC's No. 1 contender and a win over Chilemba next month will secure his status as the next in line to light-heavyweight champion Chad Dawson.

Boxing is often far from clear cut as Dawson had been lined up to face Jean Pascal on May 25, which would have kept Bellew waiting for a shot.

However, reports suggest Pascal is on the brink of striking a deal to fight Lucian Bute - which would leave Dawson without a challenger.

It could all see Bellew get a shot at Dawson earlier than expected, but he is aware of the folly of taking Chilemba for granted.

"The Chilemba fight is the biggest and toughest of my career by far," Bellew said. "We know what's at stake. Chad Dawson is a step closer now, especially after this Pascal v Bute rumour. But I'm not getting carried away, I'm just looking forward.

"The future is looking really good now and I'm one fight away from the massive fight I want."

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