Ghana's Azumah Nelson unleashed a bone-crushing left uppercut Saturday to knock out Britain's Pat Cowdell in the first round at Birmingham, England, and retain his World Boxing Council featherweight title.
The scheduled 12-round bout was only 2 minutes 24 seconds into the first round when Cowdell (30-4), trying to keep Nelson (22-1) at bay with a series of rights to the body and left jabs, dropped his defenses.
The 27-year-old Ghanaian, now living in Ohio, caught Cowdell square on the chin and knocked the Briton cold.
It was the first time that Cowdell had been knocked out in a 34-fight career. It took three minutes before Cowdell, 32, was helped, still staggering, to his corner.
Nelson immediately challenged Ireland's Barry McGuigan, holder of the World Boxing Assn. title, to a title-unification bout.