Chris Eubank Jr claimed the vacant IBO world super-middleweight title tonight with a dominant victory over bitter rival James DeGale at the O2 Arena, London.

Eubank Jr had admitted this fight was “do or die” against bitter rival DeGale after costly defeats to Billy Joe Saunders in 2014 and, only this time last year, against George Groves in the World Boxing Super Series semi-finals.

Eubank Jr’s ability has been questioned after he came up short when stepped up against top-class fighters.

But he answered the critics in style with an impressive unanimous points win having forced DeGale to the canvas twice.

The judges scored it 114-112, 115-112 and 117-109.

After an even first round, Eubank Jr caught DeGale in the second with a massive left hand and he was only held up by the ropes as he received a mandatory eight count.

Eubank Jr went in search of the stoppage but was wild shots failed to find the mark.

Even his father, former two-weight world champion Chris senior, admitted he was “petrified” his son would lose in the build up but from the second round on that did not look likely.

Former two-time world champion and Olympic gold medallist DeGale insisted his pedigree would prove too great for the Brighton fighter, who lost the IBO world title when he was beaten by Groves.

Fight summariser Groves, though, was off his seat as Eubank Jr threatened the early stoppage.

Eubank, who had a record of 27-2-0, had less miles on the clock than DeGale, the two-time IBF champion, and looked fresher throughout.

He kept on top of DeGale, 33, (24-2-1), often finishing rounds with the higher workrate on the ITV pay per view show as a seven-year feud came to the boil.

Eubank Jr changed tack for the first time, bringing in Nate Vasquez as his dedicated trainer for the fight.

Rookie Vasquez told his man to keep the workrate high and in the tenth DeGale went down again as Eubank came down the home straight to victory.