Billy Joe Saunders retains WBO belt after beating David Lemieux in Canada


You may remember how, ahead of the most recent defence of his WBO middleweight title, Saunders laughed as his son punched opponent Willie Monroe Jr. below the belt as the fighters took to the scales in London.

Saunders has cut a frustrated figure in the past 18 months as world title holder. I thought he would come to fight coming from a decision lost.

Saunders should have had that right straight away mind you, but a draw between the pair last September means they will likely rematch next May.

Golovkin holds the WBA, WBC, IBF and IBO middleweight titles.

The Sun newspaper noted Saunders "peeled off his boxers covering his modesty with his hands" while Lemieux also shucked his under trousers to make the weight limit.

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The undefeated Hatfield man was awarded the fight on judges' scores of 120-108, 117-111, 118-110, but the latter two were generous to the home fighter. "Everyone thought that I was in for a beating, and look at what happened". I look like I could run out of gas. "Fight me now and you'll be punching fresh air".

He added: 'David has to come from round one to try and knock me out.

In his first start with new trainer Dominic Ingle, Saunders improved to 26-0.

Without him, "my boxing career would be finished", he said.

The Canadian is known for being a power puncher while Saunders has only won 12 of his 25 fights by knockout.

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Lemieux, meanwhile, claimed to have injured his left hand in the second round, but lacked humility - and indeed a grasp on reality - when he refused to credit Saunders for his victory.

Saunders also questioned the physical condition of Lemieux, who he has labelled "short legs" during the build-up, suggesting he will be carrying injuries into the fight.

"It helps - people say it doesn't but if I can make him try 10 per cent harder and blow himself out three rounds quicker then I've done my job".

Golovkin is in talks for a rematch with Canelo Alvarez on May 5 and if the pieces fall together, the victor of Saturday's bout could challenge in a unification fight against Golovkin or Alvarez in September.Lemieux has recorded four straight wins since being stopped in the eighth round by Golovkin two years ago.

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