Tony Bellew wins world championship with knockout blow at Goodison Park

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Tony Bellew became Britain's 13th world champion with a devastating third round technical knock-out of Ilunga Makabu at Goodison Park.

Bellew got off to the worst possible start when he hit the canvas in the first round, but he fought back brilliantly to end the fight midway through the third.

The Merseyside-based fighter now improves his record to 27 wins, with two losses and one draw. Makabu, who needed medical assistance after being knocked out cold, falls to 19-2.

You can check out the video of Bellew's final blows in front of a fervent Goodison Park crowd  - in scenes reminiscent of the 33-year-old's cameo in the recent Rocky film, Creed, below.

After the fight, Bellew admitted that his nose was broken when he was floored in the first round by Makubu, who had claimed 18 of his 19 wins by knock-out.

"He broke my nose with that left hand," he told BBC Radio 5 live on Monday.

"I'm talking through my nose now and it's smashed to bits, but I have a green and gold belt. If you had to take my nose off my face for that belt I'd take it."

There was genuine concern for Makubu, who stayed on the canvas after the fight had been called, but fortunately for all concerned the Congolese fighter was cleared by fight doctors afterwards.

The win could open up the door for Bellew to take on fellow British cruiser-weight David Haye in one of the biggest domestic fights available.

"You've gone long enough fighting those clowns," Bellew told Haye, who has completed his two comeback fights against Mark de Mori and Arnold Gjergjaj at Heavyweight. "I just beat the best cruiserweight in the world, I'm the best now."

Do you think Bellew beats Haye in a showdown later this year? 

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