This Saturday night sees the return to action of WBO world middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders (24-0) as he faces the challenge of American Willie Monroe Jr (21-2).
The eclectic Saunders is the big story here. Saunders grabbed the WBO world title at 160 pounds back in December of 2015 when he won a majority decision over fellow countryman Andy Lee. In the ensuing 21 months however, Saunders has defended the belt just once, in December of 2016 against unsung Artur Akavov. That just isn’t busy enough, and when you factor in the amount of talk that issues from the Saunders camp, you can see why Brits have grown tired of Saunders’ rhetoric. Saunders holds a world title in the respected middleweight division and he would be a natural to face the winner of Gennady Golovkin versus Saul Alvarez, since their middleweight showdown goes down this Saturday as well.
Monroe Jr is a bit of a different opponent for Saunders, who is fighting his first American. Monroe Jr is best remembered for his May of 2015 loss to Gennady Golovkin where he was stopped in six rounds. In that fight however, he managed to put the feared Triple G on his back foot and many credit him with a valiant effort. Monroe Jr will enter the fight Saturday as an underdog, but it is not as wide a line as might be expected.
The fight is the main event of Frank Warren’s 11-fight boxing card slated for the Copper Box Arena in London. The main events are set to air on BT Sport in the UK.
A pair of the support fights are also getting odds at the books and you can check back later in the week to see if additional odds pop up from Warren’s card. Heavyweight Daniel Duboi (4-0) is expected to win over AJ Carter (8-3) and a pair of regional titles are on the line between light heavyweights Anthony Yarde (12-0) and Norbert Nemasapati (25-6) in a match that sees Yarde a massive favorite.
Middleweight 12 rounds – Copper Box Arena – London, England
Willie Monroe Jr +185
Billy Joe Saunders -225
Light Heavyweight 12 rounds
Norbert Nemesapati +2000
Anthony Yarde -5000
Heavyweight 10 rounds
AJ Carter +2250
Daniel Dubois -5625