By Elliot Foster
Lawrence Okolie flattened Luke Watkins to add to his title tally.
The WBA Continental champion, who won the aforementioned title with his points victory over Isaac Chamberlain at the O2 Arena in London, added the Commonwealth belt to his collection with a devastating display.
Okolie dropped the outgoing champion twice en-route to a ninth professional win at the tender age of 25.
The referee, Michael Alexander, called a halt to the contest after ‘The Duke’ Watkins was floored for the second time in the third round at Bethnal Green’s famous York Hall venue, topping the latest instalment of the JDNXTGEN series.
The official time of the stoppage was at one minute and 40 seconds of the round and Okolie is showing bags of improvement with each fight he has.
Watkins, to his credit, got up from the first knockdown, but the power of ‘The Sauce’ was just too much as he added a seventh stoppage to his flawless ledger under Brian O’Shaugnessy.
“There is a lot of my game that people haven’t seen yet. Luke Watkins asked for the fight, he got it, I got the win and much respect for him,” Okolie, who got to the Olympics but had a limited amateur background, said afterwards.
“People haven’t given me the credit that I think I deserve because they feel like I’ve had it handed to me.
“In fact, I’ve had to work for it and I’ve handled two undefeated fighters of different leagues in the same way in my last two fights.
“I’m ready to learn on the go and I’ve been training hard for years. I’m ready to keep taking risks and keep taking step-ups.”
Wadi Camacho (20-7, 12 KOs) is the mandatory challenger for the Commonwealth title at cruiserweight and his promoter Eddie Hearn suggested that he could face ‘The Macho Man’ next in his only potential defence before moving on to British and European titles.
Swindon’s Watkins, in defeat, loses his undefeated ledger and is now 13-1 with nine early.