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Gary 'Spike' O'Sullivan knocks out Antoine Douglas in the seventh round to win the WBO Intercontinental middleweight boxing championship title in Laval. Picture: Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press via AP
Gary 'Spike' O'Sullivan knocks out Antoine Douglas in the seventh round to win the WBO Intercontinental middleweight boxing championship title in Laval. Picture: Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press via AP
SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

Cork boxer Spike wants another crack at world champion Saunders after powerhouse victory in Canada

GARY 'SPIKE' O’SULLIVAN is in line for a world title shot after doing exactly what he’d vowed to do versus America’s Antoine Douglas in Canada on Saturday night.

The Cork middleweight knocked out the Virginia puncher in the seventh round to claim the vacant WBO Inter-Continental belt in the chief support bout in Quebec.

O’Sullivan could now be named as mandatory challenger to English southpaw and defending champion Billy Joe Saunders, who convincingly won in the main event on Saturday’s card, for the WBO crown.

“I want Saunders,“ said the Rebel County orthodox after his inside the distance victory over an opponent who had only been stopped once in 24 fights up to this weekend.

The Mahon fighter had vowed before the clash – which was a world title eliminator – that Douglas couldn’t live with his power shots, and so it proved to be.

The Virginian, backed up against the ropes, was battered into submission just over one minute into the seventh, with ref, Steve St-Ger

Michael Bufer with Spike O'Sullivan and coach Paschal Collins in the dressing room after the Cork man's great boxing triumph on Saturday.
Michael Bufer with Spike O'Sullivan and coach Paschal Collins in the dressing room after the Cork man's great boxing triumph on Saturday.
main, making the correct decision to take the disoriented American into protective custody 63 seconds in the frame.

The six rounds prior to the stoppage were fairly even, but O’Sullivan upped the tempo and turned up the heat in the seventh to short circuit the 10-rounder.

Both men met on the Billy Joe Saunders versus David Limieux undercard, with undefeated Saunders, who beat Limerick’s Andy Lee to claim the belt in Manchester in 2015, easily defending his WBO middleweight title on a unanimous decision over the Quebec-native.

The British 2008 Olympian beat O’Sullivan on points – one of only two defeats in the Leesiders’ career – at London’s Wembley Arena in 2013.

“I got the win, I think in impressive fashion,” added O’Sullivan.

“I caught him a few times. He’s a tough guy. He’s never been down like that before, he’s got a good chin.

“I wobbled him a few times. He really wanted the fight.”

Statistically, O’Sullivan detonated 130 of 447 (29%) of his total punches, and 102 of 291 (35%) of his power shots.

Douglas wasn’t far behind, landing 108 of 376 (29%) of his total punches, and 77 of 204 (38%) on power punches.

But the tide began to turn when O’Sullivan found the target with three clean shots in the sixth to command the momentum.

Douglas’s game plan completely unraveled when he was backed up by a massive right in the seventh and O’Sullivan finished the job with a barrage of unanswered shots.

“Delighted with the win and to get the job done.

“I would like to thank all for their support here tonight,” said the Corkman who improves to 27 victories from 29 outings in his career after his Canadian debut.

Tyson Fury and Cork boxer Spike O'Sullivan.
Tyson Fury and Cork boxer Spike O'Sullivan.

Saunders made a successful defence of his WBO middleweight title as he out-classed David Lemieux in Canada. The Briton controlled the bout from the start, avoiding any hits from the Canadian in round one as he defended his title by unanimous decision at Place Bell in Quebec.