Light-welterweight rising star Bradley Saunders (12-0) is back in action following a long layoff from injury on September 19th at the Liverpool Olympia on the undercard of Stephen Smith’s World title eliminator on Sky Sports. We spoke to Bradley on a number of things, including his punching power after recovering from a hand injury, his motivation level and the big fights he craves.
Hand troubles in the past, punching hard again
The undefeated 140-pounder from County Durham now residing in Marbella has not fought for six months, his last fight resulting in a fifth round stoppage over tough Frenchman Stephane Benito (22-18-3) at the Ice Arena in Hull on March 7th.
We first asked Bradley how his punching power has felt recently now that the hand injury is behind him:
“Feels very, very good. I’ve been letting the shots go with my trainer Danny Vaughan on the pads and he’ll tell you I’m hitting as hard as ever.
The injury has definitely strengthened my hand. Mike Hayton the Hand Surgeon is very good with his job, I should be good to go after this and then we’ll see how good I really am.
I’m very confident and looking forward to taking it out on someone.”
Motivation sky high
We asked Bradley about his motivation to get back in the ring and get cracking again, to which he enthused:
“I’ve had my breaks but now I’m now 100% good to go. I’m really looking forward to fighting again and getting in with some big name fighters. I want the best in Britain and even the world’s best.
I wasn’t really bothered at all about my hand troubles because I knew they were gonna go but I carried on regardless, pushed on and done my job.
It was the Peter McDonagh fight that I first busted my hand back in December 2012 then I did my other hand this year.
You know when you’ve done it because there’s something there that’s just not quite right but the adrenaline takes over and gets you through. When you take your glove off after the fight, it’s then that you start seeing things you really don’t want to see!”.
Looking for the big fights
Our chat with Bradley ended with a look to the future, should he get past the upcoming Liverpool test:
“Next year, without a doubt! Hopefully, I’ll get two or three fights out this year. I’ll fight whoever my manager Daniel Kinahan and Eddie Hearn want me to fight. I don’t need to call anyone out, I’ll just go in the right direction and I’ll be alright.
I see my manager Daniel every day in the gym and we both want to be getting on now, we are more than confident to take on any fighters.
Dave Ryan will be a big fight for me and a good fight for me. The best thing about it is that he wants the fight as well so there’s no reason why it can’t happen.”
Of the fight and fighter topping the bill, Saunders concluded our chat by saying, “I’ve known Stephen Smith since I was a kid and he’s a really nice lad, he deserves this shot and he’s been in with the best. I think he’ll do it, especially in his own back yard.”
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(Image credit: Chroniclelive.co.uk)
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