Jay Harris extends hot streak with sixth consecutive stoppage win
Swansea’s super-flyweight Jay Harris (9-0, 6KO) stormed towards a domestic title shot with his sixth consecutive knockout.
The 26-year-old secured a fourth round run-over of Liverpool’s brave Phil Smith (6-3), dropping the visitor four times on Frank Warren’s show at Cardiff’s Motorpoint Arena.
It leaves Harris on the verge of competing for a British or Commonwealth title, following in the footsteps of his father Peter who owned the Lord Lonsdale strap in 1988.
Harris entered the bout on a hot streak and with a lot of momentum, while Smith’s last outing was a nasty knockout defeat at the hands of world title challenger Charlie Edwards.
Eager to impress, Harris was guilty of being too blatant early on, resulting in a mouse under his right eye. The pair shared fairly even exchanges but Smith seemed to be feeling the effects of it more and he touched down before the bell.
The second round followed a similar pattern but they swapped roles and it was Smith’s turn to press forward. When Harris was pushed to the edges of the ring, he was effective in turning Smith and flurrying when the visitor was out of position.
Under instruction from his corner, which included world title challenger manager Gary Lockett, Harris straightened his shots in the third round. It brought Smith’s guard up higher and left his body open.
Harris spotted the opportunity and obliged with his favoured shot, the left hook to the rib cage. It’s been key to five of the six stoppages on Harris’ record and left Smith grimacing on the canvas twice to be saved by the bell again.
That momentum was very briefly slowed in the fourth round as Smith came roaring back. It might’ve been a last stand for the Scouser, though and Harris bided his time.
Again, it was the left hook to the body that made the breakthrough and Smith found himself on the floor for a fourth time. His corner were wise to pull him out.
The impressive win will start to open doors for Harris, who can arguably claim to be the best super-flyweight at domestic level. Birmingham’s Kal Yafai and Belfast’s Jamie Conlan are scheduled for WBA and WBO world level fights in 2017 and if successful, it should present title chances for Harris.
Unfortunately, BoxNation’s coverage started right after Harris’ bout. It would’ve likely been included in the broadcast if Kid Galahad (21-0, 12KO), who was caught with a banned steroid in his system in 2014, hadn’t been a late addition to the show.
Galahad, a former British and European champion, took less than three rounds to routinely dispatch of predictably overmatched Spanish import Reynaldo Mora, who has lost 20 consecutive bouts.
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