Callum Smith claims wide points win over Christopher Rebrasse
Last Updated: 27/06/15 1:20pm
Callum Smith preserved his unbeaten record with a gruelling points win over Christopher Rebrasse in Liverpool.
The 25-year-old Merseysider was made to work for the verdict, despite flooring the Frenchman in the 10th round, and wide scores of 118-110, 118-110 and 120-107 did not reflect a hard-fought contest at the Echo Arena.
Victory keeps Smith on course for big bouts among a crop of thriving British super-middleweights, with fights against Rocky Fielding and George Groves in his future plans.
Starting the fight behind his stiff jab, Smith shifted punches smoothly from head to body in the opening round.
Rebrasse walked into more stabbing jabs as he edged forward behind a high guard in the second, while a jolting uppercut ripped through his defences.
Blood trickled from the nose of Rebrasse, but he forced Smith back with a sustained assault in the third. Picking up the pace, Rebrasse pumped out the punches and enjoyed success with his accurate right hand.
Hurtful hooks snaked around Smith’s guard in the fourth and he answered with two close-range hooks of his own, but could only chip away at the man nicknamed ‘L’iceberg.’
Rebrasse remained on the front foot during the fifth and he marched the Merseysider back to the ropes with a determined assault.
Sensing the switch in momentum, Smith stood and traded in the sixth and briefly dislodged his opponent’s mouth guard with a left hook.
A sapping battle was unfolding and the local favourite was forced to unload his heavy artillery to keep a relentless foe at bay. Two hooks sunk into Rebrasse’s ribs in the eighth, drawing a knowing nod, and Smith was at last starting to make a telling impact.
Into the 10th, Rebrasse came rushing out of the corner in a brave bid to wrest control from Smith, but this proved a reckless tactic and he was floored by a crunching body shot. Gasping for air, he clambered to his feet and resisted Smith’s attempts to target his vulnerable ribs with grim defiance.
Still Smith searched for the stoppage in the closing rounds, but Rebrasse refused to buckle and both men continued to swap punches until the final bell.