CHRIS EUBANK JR became the third man to defeat James DeGale at the O2 Arena and one hopes he’s also the last. He should not fight again.
Today he likely feels dreadful. Not only from the physical effects of those 12 rounds, but from the realisation that his long career is all but over. That Eubank Jr – a long term pain in DeGale’s backside – applied the final punches won’t make it easy for him to rest in retirement peacefully. But rest he must, because the sport he has given everything to since he was a child will only get increasingly spiteful if he again attempts to defy time.
It wasn’t the ending he wanted. Nor the homecoming triumph his illustrious career deserved. But happy endings are notoriously hard to come by in boxing. Rarely does a boxer who has been showing signs of decline return to form, almost always that decline is punctuated by the most humbling of defeats. But the achievements that came before will define him; the Olympic gold medal, the British and European super-middleweight titles, the two reigns as IBF champion which were born in the USA.