By Thomas Lyons (WrapsOnTV)
Born and bred Traveller Billy Joe Saunders (26-0, 12 KOs) is entering a phase of elite level fighting. From past generations, fighting is in his blood and before he went onto achieve world championship honours, had successfully boxed his way onto the Olympic team for GB at Beijing.
Because the media portray their background as troublesome and violent, with Tyson Fury also incredibly ridiculed for his achievements, beating one of the best heavyweights of this era in Wladimir Klitschko in Dusseldorf to become the lineal, unified heavyweight champion. Ask yourselves one question: Why should a race or culture be given worse treatment for doing something good with their lives and representing the British people at major tournaments on the biggest stage?
That’s what a lot of people wouldn’t understand. There’s no malice here. It’s strictly business. Billy Joe gets the opportunity to make history when he faces Demetrius Andrade in Boston in October, defending his WBO middleweight crown. It’s fair to say Saunders has been relatively inactive this year but with the slick skills and incredible, superior boxing brain, how could you right off another masterclass performance, similar to the one he displayed in Montreal in December 2017 beating David Lemieux comprehensively on all scorecards, both official and unofficial?
For someone looking to get into boxing, from their amateur background right through to the pinnacle of the sport, watch Billy Joe Saunders. Someone who isn’t going to stand there and trade but move with exquisite footwork and coordination, evading punches and landing sharp flurries in sync. Saunders executes the basics so well, the jab and the typical one-two shot.
Forgetting all the shenanigans with the Martin Murray fight and pulling out twice with injury, where most people speculated that he was riding it out to get a mega fight with the winner of GGG-Canelo in September if the rematch failed to deliver. He’s now crossing over to a rival platform and facing one of America’s best talents from the 2008 Olympic team also.
Andrade has represented his country at the Olympic, similar record in the professional ranks to Saunders with 25 wins, 16 of those come by way of KO. So, Andrade isn’t recognised as a massive puncher but is also Southpaw. Saunders is comfortable and can adapt to any style accustomed to his own slick approach.
DAZN have heavily invested their money and time into the latest crop of talent in the US and with Saunders-Andrade headlining for the first time in Boston, be sure for an outstanding fight between two elite level guys.
Saunders has beaten Andy Lee, Monroe Jr and Lemieux on course to defend the belt four times since winning his title back in 2015 in Manchester. Andrade is lesser known to the British public because of his time out of the ring. From an impartial perspective, as much as we like to get behind our own, Andrade could pose Saunders problems but a Billy Joe thats switched on and raises his game 10-15% wins the fight emphatically.