It was a vintage “Pocket Rocket” performance by the 32-year-old Ulsterman who was making his Belfast return after a seven-year absence.
McCullough tore into Eremeev from the first round with a sustained barrage of shots to the body and head, tallying well over 550 punches before the Russian’s corner threw in the towel at 2:55 minutes of the fourth stanza.
The result, McCullough’s third win via stoppage in as many fights since beginning his comeback early this year, put the former WBC bantamweight champion in line for another title shot in the new year.
“I’ve only had three fights in Belfast in 10 years,” he told reporters afterward. “The fans are unbelievable. I’m slowing down a little bit, but I still throw too many punches for most fighters. I’m ready for another world title.”
McCullough improved to 26-3 with 17 stoppages after adding the now 18-6-2 (win, loss, draw) Eremeev to his 2002 knockout list.
He began the year by ending a 27-month layoff that followed the discovery of a harmless cyst in his head, with a spectacular second-round knockout of Kansas City featherweight Alvin Brown in Las Vegas last January.
In his second comeback fight, last September, McCullough dispatched South African native Johannes Maisa in four rounds in London.
McCullough’s last appearance in Belfast was a successful defense of the WBC bantamweight crown against then challenger and now current holder Johnny Bredahl in 1995.
He was scheduled to meet Hungarian Sandor Kocvak in a non-title bout there in October 2000 when a routine brain scan by the British Boxing Board of Control revealed a cyst in his head.
This led to a two-year battle with the BBBC, which enforced a British-wide ban on the then Las Vegas-based fighter.
Although later cleared to fight in the United States after exhaustive tests by American neurological experts, McCullough was denied a license by the British until last June.