Callum Smith produced a spectacular performance as he stopped rival Rocky Fielding in the first round in Liverpool on Saturday night.
In a fight between two unbeaten super-middleweights for the British title in a ‘local derby’, both men produced a stunning bout for as long as it lasted as they ultimately opted to have a shootout in the first round.
Although Fielding did threaten despite being under the cosh early on, it was Smith’s accuracy and power that inflicted the most damage as he floored his opponent three times before the referee was forced to wave the contest off.
While it is far from the end for Fielding who will undoubtedly come again, the future is bright for Smith as he moved to 18-0 and with his sights firmly set on world honours in 2016.
Having made history on Saturday night by becoming the fourth brother to win the British strap, the 25-year-old will now be looking towards bigger fights and bigger prizes.
Smith and trainer Joe Gallagher have opted to follow the WBC route, and both remain confident that they can defeat the current champion, Badou Jack.
While Smith may well need to fight in a final eliminator before securing the right to fight for the title, given his progress and natural talent, it is more a question of when rather than if he will take on Jack provided that he remains the champion.
However, there is also an intriguing option that could be presented to the pair with a possible meeting with George Groves. Smith and Gallagher have both been supremely confident when discussing the ‘Saint’ previously, as reported by Sky Sports, and are adamant that they would be able to inflict what would now be a fourth loss on him.
Whoever Smith opts to face next ahead of earning his title fight, he is undoubtedly proving that he is one of the top talents in British boxing. With James DeGale, Arthur Abraham and Fedor Chudinov currently holding the other belts in the division, it is a matter of time before their paths start to cross with the youngest of the Smith siblings.