Billy Joe Saunders becomes European Champion
- Updated: July 26, 2014
Billy Joe Saunders stopped Emanuele Blandamura in the eighth round tonight at the Phones 4u Arena in Manchester to win the vacant European Middleweight title. It started out as a night of disappointment for most fans due to Dereck Chisora pulling out of his clash with Tyson Fury Due to injury, then Tyson himself pulling out of the replacement fight with Alexander Ustinov due to his uncle being rushed to hospital, however it gave Saunders the chance to be elevated to main event status and although he wasn’t as his best, he found the pefect right hand in the eighth to make Blandamura’s corner throw in the towel.
Saunders looked out of sorts for a lot of the fight and didn’t seem to stamp the authority on his opponent I expected, he even looked to be tiring going into the middle rounds. However things turned in his favour in the eighth as Saunders connected with a sweet right hand sending Blandamura stumbling back into the ropes and as Saunders prepared for a further onslaught the Italians corner threw the towel in to avoid more damage.
Saunders is now being touted as Britain’s new world level fighter and WBO champion Peter Quillin is seen as the ideal next challenge. After the fight Saunders was quick to lay the gauntlet down to Chris Eubank Jnr, who won earlier in the night in impressive style. Saunders stated if Eubank thinks he can knock him out in six rounds as he predicted then he should get in the ring and back it up.
Also on the card as I mentions Eubank looked very impressive with a first round stoppage of Croatia’s Ivan Jukic. Liam Smith successfully defended his British light-middleweight title with a sixth-round stoppage of Jason Welborn, Terry Flanagan won the vacant British lightweight title when his opponent Martin Gethin wasn’t able to return for the eighth round due to a badly cut and swollen eye
Although Tyson fury wasn’t able to attend, his planned opponent Alexander Ustinov was in attendance and came to the ring to say a few words saying “Tyson fury said he would knock me out. Well I am here and I can’t see him in the other corner, where are you Tyson”