Eubank Jr. stops Blackwell in 10, wins British middleweight title
Chris Eubank Jr. won the British middleweight title from Nick Blackwell when their entertaining fight was stopped in the last minute of Round 10 at the advice of the ringside doctor.
However, the fight’s action was overshadowed by concern for Blackwell, who collapsed and was taken from the ring on a stretcher to hospital.
The action took place at the SSE Arena formerly known as Empire Pool, across the road from the iconic Wembley stadium.
In the build up there was no love lost between the pair. As the fight began Eubank Jr. (22-1, 17 knockouts) made good use of his right hook and time and time again found a home for the left uppercut and broke Blackwell (19-4-1, KOs) down to the body.
To his credit the rugged defending champion barrelled forward showing his toughness throughout.
At the midway stage Eubank was ahead but Blackwell was having his moments.
However, the tide swung irreversibly in Round 7 when Eubank busted up Blackwell’s face into a bloody mess. Blackwell did well to stay on his feet through out the onslaught.
At the conclusion of Round 8 Eubank Sr. could be heard telling his son, “If the referee doesn’t stop it I don’t know what to tell youÔÇª maybe you shouldn’t leave it to the referee [to stop the fight] but you’re not going to take him out to the face, you’re going to take him out to the body.”
Blackwell was brave but as the fight wore on Eubank was firmly in control. In Round 10 the Wiltshire man’s left eye was swollen and almost closed. Referee Victor Loughlin sought the advice of the ringside physician who advised him to call the fight off at 2.21 of the round.
Billy Joe Saunders, the WBO middleweight titleholder who was ringside and shares a rivalry with Eubank, jawed at the new British champ soon after the fight ended.
Saunders told the watching TV audience, “Maybe he [the referee] could have pulled out [Blackwell] a couple of rounds earlier, he was down on points, to be fair the best man won.”
Eubank Jr. was pleased with his performance.
“It was a great fight,” Eubank Jr told Channel 5. “Blackwell was a helluva competitor. This is what British boxing needs, two warriors coming together and putting it on the line for the fans.
“It’s nothing personal, it’s all business, I wanted the mans belt. I’ve always dreamed of being British champion and tonight that dream became a reality. All credit to Blackwell.
“I was hitting him with some hellacious shots and the referee saw fit to let the fight go on, looking back on it now maybe he should have stopped it a bit earlier because Nick had to be taken out on a stretcher.
“Now I’m in the position to say I’m British champion. Now we’re moving on to bigger and better things. I want a world title shot.”
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