This is a total beatdown and you have to wonder how much longer Smith’s corner will allow this to continue. Álvarez continues to tee off with power shots as Smith’s white trunks have mostly faded to pink from the blood draining from his nose. Smith is throwing punches off the ropes and showing a brave fighting spirit, but Álvarez has won every minute of every round. The complete package.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 100-90 Smith)
Álvarez picks up where he left off in the ninth. He’s stalking Smith around the ring, connecting with a barrage of bruising hooks and uppercuts to the head and body. At one point a power shot sends Smith reeling backward and he’s held up only by the ropes. A trickle of blood is trailing from Smith’s nose. Canelo lands with a right uppercut between the guard with about 30 seconds left in the round that badly hurts the Liverpudlian. Smith is in big, big trouble. This could have been scored a 10-8 round even without a knockdown.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 90-81 Smith)
Smith lands a pair of flush shots early in the round, but Álvarez walks right through them and responds with an uppercut and a straight right. He’s moving in and revving up in search of a stoppage. Smith showing fight and throwing back, but Álvarez is pouring on the power shots. Another big round for Álvarez.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 80-72 Smith)
Álvarez seems to find the target with a right hand whenever Smith is backed up along the ropes. This is one of the finest performances of Canelo’s career: a sublime exhibition of hand speed, punch variety and slick defense. Smith has no answers and it seems only a matter of time.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 70-63 Smith)
The sixth was Smith’s best round of the fight but it still wasn’t enough to nick the frame as Álvarez continues to dictate the pace. Smith’s work rate is admirable, but Álvarez’s shifty movement and constant pressure continues to frustrate the bigger man.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 60-54 Smith)
Álvarez is walking Smith down. He’s marching straight into the pocket against an opponent seven inches taller than him, making him miss and picking him apart with deft counter-punching. This is one-way traffic.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 50-45 Smith)
Canelo connects with a right hand that hurts Smith. He follows it with another right hand to Smith’s body. Álvarez continues to close the distance and lands a one-two combination. Smith’s face is starting to get marked up. Smith is missing a whole lot more than he’s connecting. He manages to connect with a looping uppercut, but Álvarez answers an uppercut moments later. If Smith has a back-up plan, now may be the time to consider it.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 40-36 Smith)
Canelo steps on the gas from the bell, throwing a left hook with bad intentions to open the round and ratcheting up the pressure from there. Álvarez is closing the distance faster and Smith is spending far too much time along the ropes. Álvarez is outthrowing and outlanding the Liverpudlian. Easiest round to score so far.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 30-27 Smith)
Álvarez continues to apply pressure, inching forward and closing the distance at all times. He’s firing the jab and putting the left hook behind it. Smith continues to paw with the jab to slow Álvarez’s approach. Álvarez just misses on the same overhand right that flattened Sergey Kovalev. Smith would do well to be aware of that punch. Smith lands a well-timed left hook, but Álvarez is doing a little bit more.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 20-18 Smith)
Both men fighting at a measured pace in the opening minute. Smith’s advantages of 7in in height and 7½in in reach appear even more imposing under the lights than at yesterday’s weigh-in. Smith paws with the jab but Canelo is moving forward, gaining confidence with his well-timed jab as the round moves forward. Canelo’s upper-body movement is giving Smith a bit of trouble. The Mexican has done enough to win what amounted to a feeling-out round for each.
Guardian’s unofficial score: Álvarez 10-9 Smith (Álvarez 10-9 Smith)
A virtual Michael Buffer has taken the JumboTron to handle the fighter introductions. The champion Callum Smith, in a breach of boxing protocol, makes his way from the tunnel first. As he circles the ring, a Canelo hype video narrated by Matthew McConaughey plays on the big screen. And now here’s Álvarez, entering the arena to a live rendition of Mexico Lindo y Querido, his signature walkout song. We should be under way momentarily and will pick it up with round-by-round updates from here.
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Anthem time at the Alamodome. God Save the Queen, followed by Himno Nacional Mexicano and the Star-Spangled Banner. Álvarez and Smith pace in their dressing rooms in an effort to keep loose as the anticipation builds. Not much longer now.
at 4.39am GMT
Marc Castro has opened his professional career with a third-round knockout of Luis Valdes in the final preliminary bout. The two-time amateur world champion out of Fresno floored Valdes twice and closed the show at 1:59 of the third round.
Next up: Canelo Álvarez v Callum Smith.
Hello and welcome to San Antonio for tonight’s super middleweight showdown between Saul ‘Canelo’ Álvarez and Callum Smith. The unbeaten Liverpudlian is putting his WBA “super” title at 168lbs on the line against Álvarez, the red-headed Mexican and three-division champion widely regarded as boxing’s biggest star. The vacant WBC strap is also at stake in a unification bout featuring two of the division’s best.
The final undercard bout of the night is about to start with two-time amateur world champion Marc Castro making his much-anticipated pro debut against Luis Valdes in a junior lightweight bout scheduled for four rounds. Álvarez and Smith are expected to make their ringwalks shortly thereafter.