Chris Eubank Jr. progressed to the World Boxing Super Series elimination tournament after cruising to a unanimous points decision against an accommodating Arthur Abraham on Saturday.
Abraham, now a faded force, lacked any ambition as he plodded forward to meet Eubank’s stinging blows, but the Germany-based boxer refused to go down at the SSE Arena, Wembley.
Eubank (25-1, 19 KOs), who had vowed to become the first boxer to stop Abraham (46-6, 30 KOs), had to be content with scores of 120-108, 118-110 and 118-110.
“He’s definitely the most durable opponent I’ve faced,” said Eubank.
“I hit him with every shot in the book. He didn’t win a round and I’m happy with the performance.”
Eubank joins fellow Britons George Groves, Jamie Cox and Callum Smith in the eight-man, $50 million (£41 million) competition, which is due to start in September and October. The Brighton-based boxer will face Turkey’s Avni Yildirim (16-0, 10 KOs) in the quarterfinal after claiming the best victory of his six-year professional career. Groves, who owns a super middleweight world title, will meet Eubank in the semifinals if they both win their opening bouts in the competition.
“I got to show my boxing skills and go 12 rounds. I’m going into a tournament to take George Groves’ belt,” said Eubank.
“I took it easy in the last round because I didn’t want to risk it, to get a cut or something.”
Eubank, 27, had fought only once in the 12-stone division before climbing through the ropes at the SSE Arena, which had a far smaller crowd than the 10,000-strong sell-out for the Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor media event the night before.
But Eubank quickly showed he was not out of his depth and peppered Abraham with punches in the second round, forcing the Armenia-born boxer to desperately cover up on the…