HEREFORD professional boxer Dean Evans landed a knock-out punch to win a British Classic Challenge Lightweight against Andy Harris.

A combination of punches saw the referee step in and halt the contest with just a second of the match remaining.

"Everything came together for me," said Evans.

"I'd like to say a big thank you to Joe Wrona and Neil Gibbons for all the hard work they've put in with me over the last six weeks.

"The achievement of winning the belt will stay with me forever."

Manager and promoter Keith Mayo was full of praise for Evans.

"He's a tough lad with a big heart," he said,

"He never gives up, it was a bit of a war in there and after a slow start he produced the goods."

Evans was looking to avenge the two defeats he suffered against Harris as an amateur.

Harris came out strong on the opening bell at the fight in Gloucester, forcing Evans on the back foot.

But neat footwork kept Evans out of trouble, with Harris throwing left hooks and big overhand rights.

Harris took the opening round, and with the next two rounds following suit, Evans was three rounds behind on the score cards.

But Evans picked up the tempo at the start of the fourth, with a sharp left hook knocking Harris' gum shield to the canvas.

Rounds six and seven saw the Hereford boxer pile on the pressure and control the fight and, with the atmosphere at boiling point, both boxers climbed off their stools in the eighth and final session looking for a big finish.

Evans forced Harris onto the back foot two minutes and 30 seconds into the round, with a flurry of punches dropping him to the canvas.

Harris rose to his feet on the count of eight, but Evans followed up with another combination of punches, which resulted in the referee stepping in and halting the contest.