Nigerian heavyweight prospect Efe Ajagba (now 15-0) took another step on the route to the top with an impressive knockout of Brian Howard in Tulsa on Saturday night.
The 26-year-old – now based out of Texas – had looked laboured in his first Top Rank start last September, a decision win over Jonathan Rice in Las Vegas.
Ajagba though had reportedly injured his hand during that win, and after a seven-month hiatus he was back with a bang here.
The first round was slow in the early going with Ajagba trying to find his range and Howard (now 15-5) happy to stay on the ropes and avoid oncoming punches.
The final minute of the session though was a portent of things to come as Ajagba loaded up with a trio of big rights which all landed.
Round 2 was a similar affair with Ajagba patiently trying to tee up openings to unleash that powerful right hand, while Howard was again content to fight off the back foot for the most part.
The third round would see the show ended in some style by the Nigerian prospect, as he stepped in beautifully to connect right on the button with a big overhand right. Howard went crashing to the canvas and was down for several minutes before eventually rising to his feet.
Oh. My. Goodness. @AjagbaEfe.
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) April 11, 2021
The manner of the victory was extremely impressive from Ajagba, and we now wait to see who will be the next stepping stone en route to a higher level.
He told ESPN afterwards: “It feels really good. I listened to the corner, they told me to start to the body and then go to the head. When I started with the jab to the body, it caused him to drop his hands. Then came the right hand.”
Ajagba is currently ranked #11 by the World Boxing Council (WBC) in its latest heavyweight list. Twelve of his 15 victories so far have come inside distance.