Shane Cameron defies odds with Barrett KO

Two bottles of champagne were whisked into Shane Cameron’s dressing room after he stunned Monte Barrett with a thundering fourth-round knockout to rejuvenate his heavyweight career in Auckland.

With a huge overhand right hook just 18 seconds into the fourth round, Cameron reclaimed the WBO Asia Pacific and Oriental belts in devastating fashion to shock most predictions.

Cameron’s power has long been questioned, but with Barrett needing to be helped to his feet more than a minute after being floored, those jibes are sure to cease.

The 41-year-old Barrett didn’t see Cameron’s shot coming and, after trash-talking his way through the build-up, the American was, for once, short of words.

“It was an amazing victory. I’d like to thank everyone who turned up here tonight to support me. It was an amazing feeling coming out and the ending was spectacular,” Cameron said.

“I said I was going to get these belts back and I did.”

Barrett, who strode to the ring looking like Santa Claus, meanwhile, is now seemingly set for retirement.

“Shane was prepared for the fight. He fought a good fight and my hat goes off to him and his team,” Barrett said after recovering from the brutal punch.

“It was one of those shots that you don’t see coming.”

Cameron’s two-and-a-half week training camp with former British champion David Haye in London clearly paid dividends.

Barrett is considered the gateway to bigger heavyweight clashes and Cameron will now look to capitalise on this remarkable underdog triumph.

The 34-year-old Kiwi had spoken of gaining redemption after his dramatic second-round defeat to David Tua nearly three years ago. This was the defining fight of his career and he more than delivered.

In the tentative opening round, Barrett was content to let the challenger come to him. The American took that first round with two strong overhead right hooks, as Cameron attempted to work the jab and move.

Barrett twice made head-butt claims in the second round, but Cameron found his feet and shook off the initial nerves to hit the mark with strong right-hand hooks.

Both fighters landed heavy shots in the third. Cameron’s home-crowd rose to their feet thinking, on initial glance, he had secured a knockdown but it turned out Cameron had pushed the title holder down.

Few expected Cameron to stop this fight early. But with one punch the Commonwealth Cruiserweight champion defied the odds, declared he will not freeze on the big stage, can step up in class and ignited Kiwi boxing once more.