Dillian Whyte comfortably defeated Oscar Rivas on points, despite being knocked down, to become mandatory challenger to Deontay Wilder's WBC world heavyweight title.
'The Body Snatcher' has been ranked number one by the WBC for over 600 days without a shot at Wilder but now his chance should just be around the corner after a 10th successive victory since the sole defeat of his career against Anthony Joshua.
Whyte (26-1, 18 KOs) was the pantomime villain against Joshua at London’s O2 Arena in December 2015 but now he's very much the crowd favourite after another entertaining bout at the same venue, where he once again showed guts and determination to defy a ninth-round knockdown and go on and complete an otherwise convincing victory.
The judges scored the bout 115-112, 115-112, and 116-111 in the 31-year-old favour before being presented with the WBC interim heavyweight title.
For Rivas (26-1, 18 KOs) it was the first defeat of his professional career but he earned plaudits from the Londoner at the end of the bout.
Whyte delivered his intent early on, hurting his opponent with an explosive straight right in only the second round.
The Colombian temporarily steadied the ship but Whyte remained in control of the bout, working his jab and unleashing an uppercut through Rivas's defence in round five.
The 32-year-old had sustained swelling to his left eye, with the impressive Whyte continuing to land a number of body shots on his opponent before delivering another huge uppercut in the eighth.
Whyte looked on course for a straightforward victory, but the bout threatened to turn on its head when Rivas sent Whyte to the canvas following a huge uppercut in a spellbinding ninth round.
A shaky Whyte returned to his feet, but with 50 seconds of the round remaining, Rivas sensed a finish, unloading on his fragile opponent and landing a huge right.
Whyte scrambled to the bell before going on to navigate his way safely through the remaining three rounds as the judges delivered their unanimous verdict.
Dereck Chisora defeated Artur Szpilka while cruiserweight Lawrence Okolie extended his unbeaten record to 12 with victory over Mariano Angel Gudino.