CHRIS EUBANK BILLY JOE SAUNDERS REMATCH POTENTIAL AFTER BIG DISPLAY AT WEEKEND?
By Sam Jordan
Chris Eubank Jr. made his much awaited return to action Saturdy with a one-sided demolition of Russian Dimitriy Chudinov at the O2 arena in London.
In a promotion labelled “Risky Business”, and acting as chief support to Tyson Fury’s clash against Christian Hammer, Eubank ripped the WBA ‘interim’ world title away from the champion as he stopped the Russian in the final round of an enthralling twelve round contest.
Boxing for the first time since his split decision defeat to Billy-Joe Saunders, Eubank produced a dazzling display, leaving the crowd at the O2 screaming his name in adulation as the all-action fighter showed his full repertoire of punches in a dominant performance.
Although he did not knock down the champion, the damage to Chudinov’s face at the end of the contest told the story, Eubank had completely battered his opponent from pillar to post and in all honesty the fight could and should have been stopped a lot sooner, however Swedish referee Michael Hook was prepared to give Chudinov every chance to try to get himself back into the fight.
The fight very nearly never took place after Chudinov’s team threatened to pull out of the bout following the appointment of British officials, something that contradicted the fight contract as the Russian had requested neutral officials.
Following the intervention of Robert Smith of the British Boxing Board of Control (BBofC) however, the fight went ahead as planned, just after 9pm, following the change of referee and once scoring judge.
The fight itself began a little tentatively, with both fighters feeling each other out in the opening exchanges with Eubank edging three of the first four rounds.
From the 5th round onwards though Eubank assumed control, landing trademark uppercuts time and time again as he went to work on the champion.
The 9th round brought 13 unanswered shots from Eubank, Chudinov being forced to defend as Eubank unloaded barrage after barrage of vicious hooks to the body and head.
By the 12th the outcome of the fight was already a formality. This did not stop the enigmatic Eubank however as the home favourite ploughed forward, looking for the all important finish. Following two strong onslaughts the referee finally stopped the contest, allowing Chris Eubank Sr. to enter the ring and drape his son in a Union Jack flag whilst also posing for pictures.
BILLY JOE REMATCH
With such a comprehensive return to action, there was only one thing on the new champion’s mind in the post match interview, and that was a rematch with the man who took his undefeated record, Billy-Joe Saunders.
Speaking on Box Nation, Eubank told the watching public “I’m ready for redemption” before warning “Billy-Joe Saunders, I’m coming for you.”
Reflecting on the fight itself, Eubank admitted that his opponent was as brave as they come and seemed to be in disbelief that the fight was allowed to continue for as long as it did.
Each flurry of Eubank’s punches had brought more damage to the face of the brave Chudinov, who despite taking so much punishment, kept coming back for more until the referee waved it off.
His father, Chris Eubank Sr. then weighed in with his thoughts on the bout, explaining that his son was under strict instruction to work behind the jab, something he failed to do in his grudge match against Saunders.
After the ‘Bad Blood’ match between Saunders and Eubank, some doubted whether Eubank Jr. could mix it at the top level, with some even criticising his father’s influence and insisting he may be better going it alone. After this performance however he will have silenced many of his critics. One thing is for sure, love him or hate him, this young man is one talented individual, who with a few more challenging fights seems destined for the upper echelons of this grueling sport.
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