Ricky Burns has become a three-weight world champion after defeating Italy's Michele Di Rocco to claim the vacant WBA Super-Lightweight title in Glasgow. The 33-year-old sealed his place in history by knocking his opponent out in the eighth round of their much-anticipated clash.
In doing so, Burns has become the first Scot to win a world title at a third weight, as well as the first Briton to do so since Duke McKenzie. He is also the first man to beat Di Rocco since 2007.
"When the fight was stopped I could feel myself welling up," Burns told Sky Sports. "My team knew what this meant to me. After everything that's happened, [promoter] Eddie Hearn showed faith in me and delivered this big fight.
"Everything we worked on in the gym was working. [Trainer Tony Sims] couldn't believe how easy it was. Thanks to all my team and everyone for coming down here. I just can't believe it, honestly.
"In the gym we're always having a laugh that I'm the only veteran. I feel like I've been fighting forever. I was 12 when I started, thanks to everyone who helped me through the years to get here. I don't know what to say."
The former super-featherweight and lightweight world champion started the fight on the front foot and had Di Rocco reeling from three punishing right hands in the first round. The Italian was then floored in the third following an eye-catching combination of punches and a shove from Burns.
The Scot dished out some further pain in the sixth round, including a straight right hand that snapped Di Rocco's head back. And he sealed his victory two rounds later when Burns knocked his opponent to the floor and the Italian was unable to make the count in time.