Chris Billam-Smith & Ben Whittaker Score Impressive Stoppages
In an all-out war, WBO Cruiserweight champion “The Gentleman” Chris Billam-Smith (19-1, 13KO) overcame adversity to score an impressive stoppage against Mateusz “Master” Masternak (47-6, 31KO).
It was a shootout from the start of the bell as Master was clicking on all cylinders early. He fought at a high-octane pace, landing combination punches and right hands that hurt Billam-Smith several times in the early rounds.
In the middle rounds, the champion looked tired as he continued to eat jabs and right hands like M&M candy. However, Billam-Smith mounted a comeback behind a lethal body attack.
In round seven, The Gentleman kicked into another gear and continued to attack the body with brutal shots. It was clear Masternak was wilting and hurt from taking those shots as he didn’t return fire.
The challenger’s corner informed the referee their fighter was injured and couldn’t continue at the start of the eighth round. Billam-Smith showed tremendous heart in retaining the title but is heading into a rematch against the only man to have beat him in Richard Riakporhe.
BEN WHITTAKER OBLITERATES STIVEN DREDHAJ IN FOUR ROUNDS
Rising light heavyweight prospect “The Surgeon” Ben Whittaker (5-0, 4KO) scored an impressive knockout over Stiven Dredhaj (11-3-1, 3KO).
This fight started in typical Whittaker fashion, using the jab, footwork, and showboating early to take control of the contest. With that pole-like jab, the 2020 Olympic silver medalist busted the nose of Dredhaj, and it was downhill from there.
In round three, Whittaker landed a sharp punch on the top of the head that forced his opponent to take a voluntary eight count. After receiving a stern warning from the referee for showboating, he was all business afterward.
In round four, The Surgeon went to work and landed thudding hard shots. Realizing Dredhaj was ripe for the picking, he landed a two-piece combination that stretched the Albanian on the canvas.
The referee immediately waved off the fight and called for medical attention to help Dredhaj off the canvas. It was another solid performance for Whittaker, who is quickly approaching a shot for a domestic-level title.