Chris Eubank Jr beat Liam Smith by TKO in round 10 of their middleweight rematch after knocking him down twice.
Eubank, 33, dropped Smith in the fourth round, the same round in which the Liverpudlian beat him in their first fight back in January.
Although Eubank was not able to press this advantage, he continued to dominate at Manchester Arena with an impressive range of shots.
And in round 10 the referee stopped the fight after Smith, 35, went down again.
“What happened tonight was supposed to happen in January,” Eubank told Sky Sports. “I trained hard, the focus is always there and I dedicate my life to this sport.”
Smith admitted he had not been at his best, as he struggled with his movement after appearing to pick up an ankle injury.
“Chris was the better man tonight,” he said. “Chris knows how I was with the weight and after the injury, I came down three stone.
“I was flat as they come from the get go. I couldn’t move my feet and Chris was sharp.”
Eubank impressive in gaining revenge
Eubank had activated the rematch clause following his first knockout defeat seven months ago, and after numerous delays he returned to the scene of that loss stronger than before.
“I had to fight some demons, a lot of things to prove, a lot of people saying I don’t have it any more,” he said.
“I had to live with that for six months knowing it isn’t true. I enjoy new challenges, and rise to the occasion when I have to.”
Smith came in as slight favourite after his impressive win in January and had the partisan north-west crowd on his side, but Eubank was more than prepared, playing up to his villain role as he cupped his ear to the boos of the audience on entering the ring.
After an even start, Eubank gained the ascendancy and dropped Smith with a fierce uppercut in round four, from which the Liverpudlian never truly recovered.
Chris Eubank Jr lands an uppercut on Liam Smith
Eubank was stopped in four rounds in his first encounter with Smith seven months ago
Eubank attempted to finish the fight soon after, landing a ferocious series of punches in round five that Smith managed to weave away from and give his supporters hope.
But Eubank knew he was on top and could bide his time, calmly returning behind the jab in the middle rounds as Smith sought the knockout punch he needed.
With Smith’s movement seemingly hampered by an issue with his left ankle, Eubank moved in to settle the victory, putting his opponent back on the canvas before the referee waved the fight off – and granted Eubank revenge.
Eubank had been involved in bitter confrontations with Smith out of the ring before both bouts but called his rival a “warrior” after the rematch and said he was open to a third fight.”I was surprised I hit him with a flurry of punches, I must have hit him for 20 seconds and he was still standing, I just thought ‘this guy is tough’,” said Eubank. “Crafty old fox, he’s been there done that, he’s a veteran.
“I said ‘you’re a warrior’. He wasn’t looking for a way out. It’s becoming normal to quit now, which isn’t good. Having no quit is good for boxing.
“If the fans want to see a third fight, you know me, I won’t back down.”
However, Eubank also looked at moving on to “bigger and better fights” following the victory.
“There’s some big names out there. I see a few of these guys in the crowd. I’m coming for you,” he said.
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