Chris Eubank Jr. accomplished two things on July 15: retain the IBO super middleweight championship and secure the final spot, and the No. 3 seed, in the World Boxing Super Series.
Eubank defeated Arthur Abraham via unanimous decision to retain the IBO title in convincing fashion. Eubank nearly won all rounds on all three judges scorecards, even sweeping the fight in one scorecard (120-108, 118-110, 118-110).
Abraham showed a lot of signs of decline in the fight, sitting on the ropes and inviting the Brit to attack him throughout the fight, hoping Eubank would tire out. Unfortunately for Abraham, it did not work for most of the fight as Eubank was aggressive throughout the entire fight, save for the last round, where Eubank took the foot off the accelerator, trying to protect himself for the World Boxing Super Series.
"I got to show my boxing skills and go 12 rounds. I'm going into a tournament to take George Groves' belt. I took it easy in the last round because I didn't want to risk it, to get a cut or something," Eubank Jr. said after the fight.
Now he joins a stacked field of super middleweight boxers, a field that includes WBA "super" super middleweight champion George Groves. Below are the super middleweight first round matchups. Seedings are in parenthesis:
- (1) George Groves (WBA "super" super middleweight champion) vs. Jamie Cox
- (2) Callum Smith vs. Erik Skoglund
- (3) Chris Eubank Jr. (IBO super middleweight champion) vs. Avni Yildirim
- (4) Juergen Braehmer vs. Rob Brant
The World Boxing Super Series begins with the first round of their cruiserweight and super middleweight tournaments in September and October.