• Boxing

Rees stops Watson to win British title

ESPN staff
November 6, 2010

Gavin Rees got his hands on the British lightweight crown with an 11th-round stoppage of John Watson in a pulsating encounter in Newport.

The pair locked horns for the vacant title and the fight see-sawed before Rees' greater experience allowed him to take charge late on and the referee stepped in to stop the contest deep into the 11th.

Rees made a fine start, landing a couple of punishing blows in the first round and his speed troubled Watson.

However, the Welshman failed to put his unbeaten opponent away and was struck by a fine straight shot from Watson that split Rees' nose. Watson began to dominate his opponent and looked like inflicting a second defeat on Rees, but the 30-year-old found a great shot that put Watson down in the 10th.

Watson called on Rees to suggest he was okay, but he was overwhelmed by a barrage of shots and the contest was called off in the 11th.

Jason Cook produced a sizzling bit of finishing to defeat Barrie Jones in their light-welterweight fight.

Cook struggled early on against the slick movement of his southpaw opponent, but he found a power punch that floored Jones. The Welshman seized his chance and followed up with a brutal shot to the body that prompted the stoppage.

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