Chris Billam-Smith stops Mateusz Masternak to retain WBO title


Chris Billam-Smith successfully defended his WBO cruiserweight title, stopping Mateusz Masternak at the start of the eighth round today in Bournemouth.

Billam-Smith and Masternak had put on a good, physical fight to that point, but Billam-Smith had done enough damage to the body that Masternak quit on a rib injury instead of letting the round get going.

The official time of stoppage was two seconds of the eighth round.

Billam-Smith (19-1, 13 KO) won the WBO title in May from Lawrence Okolie, and this was his first defense of the belt, once again in front of a lively, packed house in his hometown.

Masternak (47-6, 31 KO) gave a good fight here, but once again came up short at the higher level of the division, and at 36, this might have been the last world title shot he’s going to get. Really, it was the first one of his career, though he did lose to Youri Kalenga in a WBA interim title clash back in 2014 in Monte Carlo.

Undercard results

  • Ben Whittaker KO-4 Stiven Leonetti Dredhaj (0:54)
  • Lauren Price PTS-8 Silvia Bortot (80-72)
  • Lee Cutler UD-10 Kingsley Egbunike (96-95, 97-93, 97-93)
  • Francesca Hennessy PTS-6 Lucretia Arrieta (59-55)

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