BRITISH boxing has enjoyed a long and illustrious association with the super-middleweight division. This is exemplified by the fact that Britain currently boasts two world champions at 168lbs in Callum Smith (WBA) and Billy Joe Saunders (WBO) – the country’s 11th and 12th world super-middleweight titlists respectively.
Here, we look back at the first 10 Brits to have held one or more of the four major world titles in the weight class.
NB. Only full WBC, WBA, IBF and WBO championships count.
Became champion: March 28, 1984
Record: 47-14-1 (39)
EDINBURGH native transitioned from karate to boxing to become the inaugural IBF champion at 168lbs.
Became champion: September 21, 1991
Record: 45-5-2 (23)
Enigmatic Brighton resident who retained the WBO belt 14 times. Shared a fierce rivalry with Nigel Benn [below].
Became champion: October 3, 1992
Record: 42-5-1 (35)
Big-hitting “Dark Destroyer” from Ilford guaranteed excitement and entertainment with his ferocious, all-action style.
Became champion: October 12, 1996
Record: 42-8-1 (29)
Like Benn, Runcorn’s “Grim Reaper” picked up the WBC strap on the road. Pushed Joe Calzaghe [below] hard.
Titles: WBO, IBF, WBC & WBA
First became champion: October 11, 1997
Record: 46-0 (32)
Welsh southpaw raised in Newbridge who dazzled all-comers to retire unbeaten. Won 22 WBO title contests in a row.
Became champion: March 27, 1998
Record: 26-3 (16)
Just under 18 months after a failed WBC title tilt at middleweight, the Telford boxer claimed WBC gold at super-middle.
Became champion: May 6, 2000
Record: 29-7 (22)
Bristolian lost a close one to Woodhall but four fights later upset Markus Beyer on away turf to win the WBC crown.
Titles: WBC x2 & IBF
First became champion: December 6, 2008
Record: 33-2 (24)
Nottingham’s “Cobra” never shirked a challenge, whether at home or abroad. Relentless and as tough as they come.
Titles: IBF x2
First became champion: May 23, 2015
Record: 25-3-1 (15)
Skilful southpaw from Harlesden who frequently demonstrated his warrior spirit in the latter stages of his career.
Became champion: May 27, 2017
Record: 28-4 (20)
Versatile Hammersmith operator who secured a world title at the fourth attempt. DeGale and Froch were his bitter foes.