UNBEATEN Lance Cooksey made an explosive start to life as a super-featherweight by recording the quickest stoppage of his professional career to date at York Hall.

The 28-year-old, who is trained by Tony Borg at the St Joseph’s gym in Newport, took just 40 seconds to see off Latvian Aleksandrs Birkenbergs in London.

Fighting on manager Mo Prior’s British Warriors Boxing Promotions show in Bethnal Green, Cooksey stretched his unblemished record in the paid code to 9-0.

Getting the job done so quickly now means that the man from Rhoose has given himself a great chance of getting back into the ring sooner rather than later.

“I’ve had two stoppages now and both have been in the first minute of the first round,” he said.

“The bell went and I made a point of not rushing in as that is how I’ve been caught in previous fights.

“I started by using my jab and then caught him with a right hand to the body – it was probably my first significant punch of the fight.

“It landed right on the solar plexus and that was it, he didn’t recover. It really took the wind out of him and he needed oxygen in his corner, but thankfully he was fine after that.”

He added: “I’m not bruised or marked so potentially I could be back in the ring very soon.

“I’m hoping to fight for the Welsh title so I might have to wait for the right show in Wales, which could be in a month or two.

“My manager is saying that he could get me back at York Hall in May, so that’s another possibility.”

Trainer Borg was understandably happy with his boxer’s triumph.

“It took us four hours to get there and it was all over in 40 seconds!” he said. “He caught the kid with a great shot, it took the wind right out of him.

“Lance is a very fit and tough guy who normally goes in and has a tear up, we’re trying to get him out of that. We’re looking for him to keep it long.”

Cooksey's rapid TKO came seven months after he ended the challenge of Devon's Jamie Speight in 54 seconds at the Vale Sports Arena in Cardiff.