Third time lucky: Natasha Jonas fulfills dream of becoming world champion

Jonas had previously fell short against Terri Harper and Katie Taylor.

Natasha Jonas realised her dream of becoming world champion at the third attempt as she captured the vacant WBO female super-welterweight title with a clinical second-round stoppage of Chris Namus.

Jonas, who came up agonisingly short in a draw against Terri Harper 18 months ago and lost a narrow decision to Katie Taylor last May, was jumping up three weight classes to take on former 154lb titlist Namus in Manchester.

If there were any worries at how Jonas would handle a leap into the unknown they were soon banished as she put down her Uruguayan opponent twice before referee Howard Foster stopped the contest 28 seconds into the second round.

The Liverpool fighter, an ex-amateur standout who surprisingly weighed two pounds more than Namus at 149.25lbs at Friday's weigh-in, looked switched on from the outset, landing punches in bunches and getting in and out of range.

The taller Namus, supported by Uruguayan compatriot and Manchester United forward Edinson Cavani at ringside, was sent crashing to the canvas for the first time by an overhand left, roundhouse right combination.

It looked a heavy knockdown and although Namus seemed to have recovered when the second round started she soon stumbled back to the canvas in a bout that served as the chief support to the Amir Khan-Kell Brook grudge match.

Namus' corner threatened to throw in the towel as she got back to her feet but Foster had seen enough despite the 34-year-old's protests to leave Jonas, aged 37, celebrating the finest moment of her professional career.

Clarke wins on debut

On the undercard, Frazer Clarke started life in the professional ranks by stopping the hopelessly overmatched Jake Darnell after 126 seconds.

Clarke - Team GB's Olympic captain at Tokyo 2020, where he won bronze at super-heavyweight - busted open his shorter opponent also making his bow in the paid ranks.

Darnell took some spiteful blows after being pinned against the ropes, and his corner threw in the towel two minutes and six seconds into the first round to spare their fighter suffering more unnecessary punishment.

Read more: Eddie Hearn won't risk putting his golden goose in the ring with Kell Brook

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