WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders is now at last just one fight away from what he so desperately craves.
When it comes to fighters having unlucky breaks in recent memory you’ll be hard pressed to find a boxer who hasn’t had the rub of the green more than Billy Joe Saunders.
Okay, maybe Cuban Guillermo Rigondeaux, but when it comes to top fighters in the UK – Saunders probably takes the cake at present.
Injuries and signing contracts for big fights only to have those fights fall out has seen the Englishman’s career stagnate considerably in the past couple of years since winning his WBO 160lbs title over Irishman Andy Lee.
This comes at a time when the middleweight division has been on fire too.
Now at long last fans will see the top two at the weight Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez fight in a genuinely sensational matchup come September in Las Vegas.
Saunders will be a keen observer on the fight as he knows if he beats Willie Monroe Jr on the same evening on September 16th, that the winner awaits a shot of the victor of the ‘GGG’ vs ‘Canelo’ super fight.
It’s the type of fight Saunders has been chasing behind the scenes for sometime and now with a new trainer and being relocated in Sheffield away from all distractions, is something he’s surely fully focused on.
A razor sharp Saunders is a formidable adversary for anyone at middleweight. The first half of his fight with Andy Lee proof of that (hat tip BoxNation YouTube):
When he has trained hard and is on form, there’s fewer quicker off the mark and able to get in and out of range as speedily and neatly in middleweight than Saunders.
He needs to get back to that level of fitness and then some though if he comes up against Golovkin or Canelo. He knows it.
The end of 2017 could be a big one for the Englishman and the middleweight division all going well.
Unification fights galore, hopefully.