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  • Lee Haskins v Stephane Jamoye

Brave Haskins surrenders European belt

ESPN staff
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Lee Haskins was floored three times in the eighth round © Getty Images
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Lee Haskins failed to defend his European Boxing Union bantamweight title after he suffered a breathless eighth-round defeat to Stephane Jamoye in Belgium.

In a thrilling encounter in which both fighters went for broke, Haskins sent his opponent crashing to the canvas early on, but appeared to tire as he was eventually stopped by a brutal body shot.

Haskins, who claimed the vacant EBU title with victory over Stuart Hall in July, made the brighter start in Liege as he floored his opponent with a straight left before continuing to shower shots on the Belgian to comfortably win the second round.

However, Jamoye, who is unbeaten in his home town, responded in the third, and spurred on by the crowd, opened up a cut above Haskins' right eye, and had the Brit pinned up against the ropes to get himself firmly back in the contest.

Haskins received a stern warning from the referee for holding, and despite throwing a number of stiff uppercuts, was left on his knees after a flurry from Jamoye's gloves.

In a brutal battle, both fighters tired quickly, but Haskins appeared the more weary and looked to be well beaten as Jamoye boxed him into a corner, but he bravely kept swinging to recover as the pair staggered around the ring.

With Haskins visibly fatigued, Jamoye took advantage, and a body shot floored the Bristolian for a second time early in the eighth round. Although Haskins was quickly back on his feet, it merely delayed the inevitable as he was dropped once again only to be sunk by another powerful shot to his torso.

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