Chris Eubank Jr. Blows Away Tom Doran – The fight between Chris Eubank Jr. and Tom Doran wasn’t billed as the chief supporting bout to Joshua vs. Breazeale on Eddie Hearn’s big show at London’s O2 Arena on Saturday, June 25. That honor went to the 168-pound contest between George Groves and Martin Murray. However, Eubank Jr. vs. Doran attracted more international eyes than any other bout on the undercard. The reason was simple. Eubank Jr. is the presumptive opponent for WBA/WBC/IBF World middleweight champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin when Golovkin makes his next start. Here was an opportunity to assess his form.
It had been known for some time that Hearn, the head of the boxing division of Matchroom Sports, the promotional firm founded by his father, was working to bring Golovkin and Eubank Jr. together. Two days before the fight, Hearn told reporters that the match was virtually a done deal. The fight, he said, would take place in London sometime in September. As to whether GGG’s camp was willing to come to London, Hearn replied “Yes, 100 percent.”
Although undefeated (17-0, 7 KOs), Tom Doran, a Welshman, was hardly the best measuring stick. Eubank Jr. was expected to win handily and didn’t disappoint. He was in command from the opening bell. He battered Doran to the canvas with a flurry of heavy punches in round three and then knocked him down twice more with body shots in the next stanza. A third knockdown followed, Doran sinking to his knees from a glancing right hand. Doran’s corner tossed in the towel as the referee was waving it off.
In the post-fight interview, Eubank Jr. assessed his performance as “just another day at the office” and said “Golovkin, I’m coming for you.”
Eubank Jr. improved to 23-1 with his 18th knockout. His lone defeat came at the hands of Billy Joe Saunders. Eubank Jr. came on strong over the second half of the fight, but it was too little, too late. Saunders won a split decision and went on the capture the WBO World middleweight title. The win over Doran was Eubank’s fifth straight inside the distance since that mishap.
Eubank’s father had 24 pro fights under his belt when he won his first world title. The elder Eubank won titles in two weight classes and participated in 24 fights overall that were sanctioned for a world title. He retired in 1998 at age 31 with a record of 45-5-2.
Both Eubanks have expressed the opinion that GGG is very beatable. The undefeated (35-0) Kazakh has knocked out 32 opponents, including the last 22 in a row, but the Eubanks are unfazed. “Every fighter has a weakness,” says the younger Eubank. “My dad and I will find it and exploit it.” In another interview, Eubank Jr. said “All (Golovkin) really has, in my opinion, is powerful punches. As far as defense and boxing technique are concerned, I feel I can outbox him and outfight him and outbrawl him.”
Eubank Jr. believes that many of GGG’s opponents were in fear of him before they stepped into the ring. He says that won’t be the case when his time comes. He exudes confidence.
Chris Eubank Jr. Blows Away Tom Doran