NOTTINGHAM, England -- Britain's Carl Froch retained his IBF super middleweight title with a third-round stoppage of Yusaf Mack on Saturday, toying with his American challenger before finishing him off with a fierce body-shot combination.
Mack, fighting outside the United States for the first time, keeled over after being struck with a right-left combination into his ribs. He was counted out with 28 seconds remaining in the round.
"When I am in there on fire like I was tonight, I think I am unbeatable, I really do," said the 35-year-old Froch, one of Britain's top boxers. "I was a bit cautious early on but then I found my range."
Cheered on by a vocal home crowd in Nottingham, central England, Froch always looked like having too much for Mack, who was sent to the canvas in the first round after being struck with a left hook and then a straight right. Mack survived the rest of the round but returned to his corner breathing heavily.
Froch bided his time before putting Mack out of his misery to claim a 30th win in 32 fights. He is set for a rematch next with Canada's Lucien Bute, who he beat in May to regain the title for the second time.
"I think I am a level above Mack," Froch said, "but anyone can give you a fight if you are not on your A game."
Mack, who dropped down from light-heavyweight for the bout, has lost five of his 38 fights.