Mitchell Smith says sparring with Carl Frampton will help to move his career along
By Dev Trehan. Last Updated: 23/10/13 5:09pm
Carl Frampton: Saw off Jeremy Parody - with the help of Mitchell Smith
Harrow boxer Mitchell Smith believes sparring with European champion Carl Frampton is the ideal stepping stone to help him fulfill his own world title ambitions.
The Southern Area super-bantamweight champion played a key role in assisting Frampton ahead of his EBU and IBF Inter-Continental title defence against Jeremy Parodi at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast last Saturday.
"To be in with Carl and holding my own with someone who is at such a high a level seven or eight weeks before my fight will ensure I am only going to get better."
Frampton extended his unbeaten record to 17 wins in as many fights with a sixth-round knockout of the Frenchman and Smith says the experience of sparring with 'The Jackal' will only accelerate his own development.
"It was a massive plus sparring with Carl Frampton before his fight against Jeremy Parodi," Smith said. "He was looking unbelievable and sparring people who are at as high a level as Carl is great.
"He's also got a lot of respect for me and I'm obviously helping him because you've got to remember they wouldn't bring me in if I was going to be a moving punchbag for him.
"To be in with Carl and holding my own with someone who is at such a high a level seven or eight weeks before my fight will ensure I am only going to get better and sharper.
"It's been good for me and it's been good for him, but I'm just going to keep listening to my trainer Jason Rowland and together with my team we're going to go the whole way."
Smith became Southern Area champion on his last outing in just his seventh professional contest with a points victory over Norfolk's Scott Moises at the Copper Box Arena.
And the 20-year-old, who will return to action at the London 2012 Olympic venue at the end of next month, insisted he is much better for the experience of working alongside Frampton and his team - which includes Barry and Shane McGuigan.
"It's been brilliant being involved with them and being involved in Carl's big fight preparations," Smith said. "I'm sure I'll be sparring with him again when he is fighting for world titles so it's an all-round good situation.
"To know that and for the likes of Barry McGuigan to come over and compliment me the way he does is great for my confidence.
"Shane is also a really good trainer and I have seen some of the stuff he has done with Carl. With Barry behind him they make an excellent team."