Maccarinelli claims belt in 45 seconds

BOXING: Enzo Maccarinelli last night claimed the European cruiserweight title with a crushing first-round knockout over local favourite Alexander Kotlobay at the Yubileiny Sports Palace in St Petersburg.

The 29-year-old Welshman took just 45 seconds to complete the job, decking Kotlobay with the first meaningful punch of the fight then following up with a left uppercut which left the Russian sagging in the ropes.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The win will lift Maccarinelli back into world title contention as he bids to regain the belt he lost when he was beaten in the second round by David Haye in London in 2008.

The 30-year-old Kotlobay had entered the fight with a decent 18-1-1 record, and 12 stoppages – many of them early – were testament to his punching power. But he was found out on a night Maccarinelli's class told.