1968-01-23 Howard Winstone w rsc 9 (15) Mitsunori Seki, Royal Albert Hall, Kensington, London, England - WBC
1968-01-23 Howard Winstone w rsc 9 (15) Mitsunori Seki, Royal Albert Hall, Kensington, London, England - WBC. Referee: Roland Dakin. Fighting for a portion of the title vacated by Vicente Saldivar, it took Winstone (125¾) six rounds to warm up, by which time Seki (125¼) was in front due to his aggression. However, by the sixth Winstone was into his stride when using the left jab to perfection, but it did not last as he soon got dragged back into a fight in the seventh. Both men had been cut in the third round, Seki under the right eye and Winstone over the left, and by the eighth the latter was back to the jab-and-move routine. The ninth round proved to be the last as Seki was suddenly cut over the right eye. Taking advantage of the situation, with Winstone working away at Seki's face furiously the referee decided that the injury was too bad for the visitor to continue. The finish was timed at 1.44.
Ranked number one in the junior lightweight division by The Ring magazine, Jose Legra was booked for Winstone’s first defence. The Cuban-born Legra, now a Spanish citizen, had lost just five of 115, having remained unbeaten in 51 contests since being outpointed in a non-title affair by Winstone in June 1965. An all-action fighter, carrying speed and power in both hands, Legra had beaten Luis Aisa (twice), Jose Luis Martinez (twice), Kid Tano (twice), Mario Sitri, Manuel Calvo (twice), Vicenzo Pitardi (twice), Love Allotey, Rafiu King, Maurice Tavant, Don Johnson, Ernest Miranda (twice) and Joe Tetteh, to name just a few of his victims. He had also won the European title when beating Yves Desmarets.