David Allen delivers crunching stoppage to beat Lucas Browne and justify headline slot
His phenomenal popularity handed him a headline slot but David Allen was determined to show he could deliver a performance to back it up.
And with a crushing left hook to the body in the third round, he folded former world heavyweight champion Lucas Browne and did just that in emphatic fashion.
The man who is arguably Britain’s most popular active fighter now has a statement victory on his record and has booted down the door to other big name opponents.
For so long, the Conisbrough fighter has made his name for being supremely tough as well as brilliantly entertaining outside of the ring.
But after knuckling down in camp like never before, he has shown what he is truly capable of if he puts his mind to it.
Tasting the adulation in the brightest of spotlights at London’s O2 Arena both before the first bell and after Browne failed to make the count should hand the motivation to Allen to at least match his efforts in training for his next bout.
That is likely to be a significantly tougher test than this one – with Browne not the fighter he was.
But the likes of David Price and Dereck Chisora will hardly have taken enthusiasm for a potential clash with the man known as the White Rhino as they witnessed the crunching body shot he landed after ducking a hook by Browne.
As has become typical, Allen took a fair amount of punishment himself over the first two rounds, with the two men exchanging big shots.
But with much improved fitness and conditioning, he looked the superior man with greater hand speed and movement.
The victory, and emotional outpouring, brought back memories of his KO of Nick Webb last year. While that was a big moment in his career, his efforts on Saturday night comfortably eclipsed it.
Earlier in the night, Barnsley fighter Andy Townend was stopped by Joe Cordina in their clash for the British and Commonwealth lightweight titles.
Townend was down three times in the sixth round with big shots to the body taking their toll.