Not many people expected Liam Smith to stop Chris Eubank Jr today in Manchester, but that’s exactly what happened, as Smith pulled off the upset via fourth round TKO in their middleweight main event.
Smith (33-3-1, 20 KO) scored what may have been the biggest win of his career, pouncing on Eubank (32-3, 23 KO) early in the fourth after a cagey first three rounds between the two, where Eubank’s jab and movement were giving Smith a little trouble, but Smith’s head movement and willingness to wade inside were not making it easy for Eubank, either.
At 34, “Beefy” Smith will now have major options at both 154 and 160, but there also is a rematch clause in the contract, which is no guarantee that Eubank, 33, will want to take it. Smith said after the fight that he’d want to do the rematch on his terms, including a possible 157 or 158 lb catchweight, but most likely the terms were in the original contract, whatever they may be.
The win itself is not a massive upset, but the method surprised pretty much everyone, and the British boxing world had a lot of immediate reactions to what happened:
Wowwww— Chantelle Cameron (@chantellecam) January 21, 2023
Wowww— Blonde Bomber ♀️ (@EbanieBridges) January 21, 2023
Holf f**k I can't believe it #EubankJrSmith— Gary Spike OSullivan (@spike_osullivan) January 21, 2023
Wow excellent call by ref— Enzo Maccarinelli (@theRealEnzoMac) January 21, 2023
Well, that was unexpected. Liam Smith just knocked out Eubanks JR! #EubankJrSmith— Sergio Mora (@TheLatinSnake_) January 21, 2023
Didn’t see that coming at all— Umar Sadiq (@TopBoxerSadiq) January 21, 2023
Madness— Karriss Artingstall (@karriss_imogen) January 21, 2023
Go on BEEFY Smith… what a win!!— Conrad Cummings (@ChampCummings) January 21, 2023
Omg!!!!!!! Wow!!!!!!!— Robbie Davies Jr (@RobbieDaviesJr) January 21, 2023
Team smith— Gamal Yafai (@Gamal_yafai) January 21, 2023
I told everyone didn’t I. Liam smith is a very very good fighter.— Raza Hamza (@real_razahamza) January 21, 2023
What a performance, absolutely buzzing for Beefy— Bradley “The Sting” Rea (@bradrea_) January 21, 2023