NPL Sports, 27th Jan: Joe Saunders shouldn’t need reminding not to take Martin Murray lightly. But if he does then he only needs to look at his old GB team-mate to see how just expecting to win can turn out, as news reports in DailyStar.Co.Uk.
Saunders was on the same Olympic team as James DeGale in 2008 and the super-middleweight surrendered his IBF title to little-known Caleb Truax in December.
It was one of the shocks of the year and a warning for Saunders that if he is not at his best when he faces the St Helens scrapper then dreams of a big fight with Gennady Golovkin will soon disappear.
Saunders will defend his WBO middleweight title against Murray on April 14 at the O2 with Terry Flanagan facing Maurice Hooker for the vacant WBO light-welterweight crown on the same bill.
Murray is a dangerous foe for Saunders with a potential big fight around the corner against Golovkin, should he beat Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez on May 5. Murray is a dangerous foe for Saunders with a potential big fight around the corner against Golovkin, should he beat Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez on May 5.
It will be Murray’s fifth world title challenge and he will know it is probably his last so he will be desperate to grab his final chance. Murray is a tough opponent and lasted 11 rounds with Golovkin in one of his four world title challenges.
So if Saunders can finish him earlier then that it would send a message to the Kazakh star. Saunders was terrific when he outclassed David Lemiuex in Canada before Christmas and he will need a repeat performance to ensure Murray leaves London empty handed.
Manchester man Flanagan will be aiming to become an unbeaten two-weight world champion as he steps up from lightweight. We were ready to sign to face WBA champion Jorge Linares but making the lightweight limit was becoming too hard for Flanagan.