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Boxing: Emphatic Okolie adds Commonwealth title

PUBLISHED: 09:28 07 June 2018

Lawrence Okolie hits out on his way to victory (pic Natalie Mayhew/Butterfly Boxing)

Lawrence Okolie hits out on his way to victory (pic Natalie Mayhew/Butterfly Boxing)

Archant

Lawrence Okolie claimed the Commonwealth cruiserweight title with an emphatic third-round stoppage of Luke Watkins at Bethnal Green’s York Hall on Wednesday.

The 25-year-old from Hackney, a former amateur at Repton and Dagenham and 2016 Olympian for Team GB, sent Watkins to the canvas twice in the third round, continuing his undefeated start to professional boxing.

The win means that after just nine fights he already has two belts, having already held the WBA Contintental title.

Watkins was also undefeated but finally suffered a loss in his 13th fight after being overpowered in east London.

Okolie’s superiority soon came to the fore and he landed some heavy blows in the opening two rounds.

Watkins was sent down with just seconds of the third round gone and then after getting to his feet he was knocked down again, with the reigning champion’s corner throwing the towel in.

Former University of East London student Okiole told Sky Sports: “It was good, there is a lot of my game that you haven’t seen yet.

“What people don’t understand is to get to the Olympics, turn professional and do what I have done, you have to have something about you and I believe I have.

“Shout out to Luke Watkins, he asked to fight, came to the fight, I got the win and much respect to him.

“People disrespect me in that they think everything has been given to me when I have had to work for it.

“I am just scratching the surface, I still haven’t been hit hard clean, I haven’t had to overcome adversity, knockdowns, stuff like that, so there is still a lot to be learned.

“I am ready to learn on the go.”

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