Kell Brook improved his unblemished record to 35-0 by stopping domestic rival Frankie Gavin in the sixth round to defend his IBF welterweight title in a stacked card at the O2 Arena in London.
Former amateur world champion Gavin showed glimpses of brilliance against the champion Brook, but he was soon chopped down by the unbeaten Sheffield fighter.
A flurry of shots in the sixth, ended by a right uppercut dropped the exhausted Gavin to his knees. The referee called a halt to the fight before making his count. Brook again spoke of his desire to fight Amir Khan or Floyd Mayweather next after the win, which was hardly the toughest night of his career.
Welshman Lee Selby added his name to the list of Britain’s current boxing world champions after defeating Russian Evgeny Gradovich to become the IBF featherweight champion. There was heartbreak, however, for Kevin Mitchell, who failed in his third crack at a world title against tough Venezuelan Jorge Linares, who retained his WBC lightweight title.
Meanwhile, Anthony Joshua became the first man to stop veteran American Kevin Johnson with a devastating second-round stoppage of the former world title challenger. Johnson was down twice in the first round.
All of Joshua’s 13 victories have been inside three rounds.
Mitchell failed to succeed at world level yet again, but it was a brave display. The Dagenham fighter was stopped in the 10th by Linares, who retained his WBC lightweight title in a gruelling encounter.
Mitchell, who himself had Linares down after a perfect right uppercut-left jab combination, beat the referee Victor Loughlin’s count but the bout was soon waved off by the referee, with Mitchell’s face, especially his left eye, a mess.
There was world title success for Selby.
Dubbed the “Welsh Floyd Mayweather” for his evasive and skillful style, Barry tactician Selby superbly despatched Gradovich to win the IBF featherweight title by a unanimous decision. Referee Deon Dwarte stopped the fight in the eighth-round, with the champion cut above his left eye due to a head clash in the fourth. The judges scored it 75-73, 80-72 and 79-73 to Selby.Reuse content