Chris Eubank Jr. was far more pleased with the work that went into making the middleweight limit this time around.
The second-generation middleweight was a healthy 159.3 pounds for his anticipated rematch versus Liverpool’s Liam Smith, who was right at the 160-pound middleweight limit. Their scheduled 12-round bout headlines a Sky Sports Box Office event which also streams live in the U.S. on ESPN+ from AO Arena in Manchester, England.
The same venue hosted their January 21 meeting, which Smith (33-3-1, 20KOs) won via fourth-round stoppage. Eubank had never been down through 34 pro bouts and boxed well through three rounds before he ran into a buzzsaw. Smith floored Eubank twice, the latter which prompted an immediate stoppage call from referee Victor Loughlin.
Smith and Eubank each weighed 159 pounds that evening. Brighton’s Eubank (32-3, 23KOs)—who’d won six in a row headed into that bout—complained that he did not feel good about the early weight cut. Significant changes were made prior to Saturday’s sequel, including a new head trainer in Brian ‘Bomac’ McIntyre as well as the addition of a nutritionist.
Their second bout was due to take place on June 17. An initial two-week delay came after it was revealed that Smith tweaked his back during training camp. The rescheduled July 1 date did not include Smith-Eubank II but the two sides were eventually able to land on this Saturday.
Smith has won four straight and seven of his last eight since a twelve-round defeat to then-WBO junior middleweight titlist Jaime Munguia. His lone loss during that time was a questionable twelve-round, unanimous decision to Magomed Kurbanov in their May 2021 clash in Ekaterinburg, Russia. His lone other career setback came to the legendary Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez in September 2016 to end his WBO 154-pound title reign.
Main undercard weights
Adam Azim (8-0, 6KOs), Slough, Berkshire, 139 pounds vs. Aram Faniian (23-1, 5KOs), Brovari, Ukraine, 139 pounds—10 rounds, junior welterweight
Frazer Clarke (7-0, 5KOs), Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire, 270 pounds vs. David Allen (21-5-2, 18KOs), Doncaster, 257 Yorkshire, pounds—10 rounds, heavyweight
Mark Heffron (29-2-1, 23KOs), Oldham, Lancashire, 167 pounds vs. Jack Cullen (21-4-1, 9KOs), Little Lever, Lancashire, 167 pounds—12 rounds, super middleweight
Mikaela Mayer (18-1, 5KOs), Colorado Springs, Colorado, 141.3 pounds vs. Silvia Bortot (11-2-1, 3KOs), Salgareda, Italy, 139 pounds—10 rounds, junior welterweight
Florian Marku (12-0-1, 7KOs), London, 146.3 pounds vs. Dylan Moran (18-1, 8KOs), Dungarvan, Ireland, 145 pounds—10 rounds, welterweight
Sky Sports YouTube preliminary undercard weights
Lauren Price (4-0, 1KO), Ystrad Mynach, Wales, 146.3 pounds vs. Lolita Muzeya (18-1, 10KOs), Lusaka, Zambia, 147.4 pounds—8 rounds, welterweight
Frankie Stringer (5-0, 0KOs), Liverpool, 135.3 pounds vs. Engel Gomez (8-15-1, 4KOs), Chinandega, Nicaragua, 134 pounds—6 rounds, lightweight
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox