Trainer: Billy Joe Saunders Wanted To Keep Fighting Canelo
Billy Joe Saunders didn’t want his title fight against Canelo Alvarez to be stopped, according to his trainer.
Saunders went one-on-one with Canelo in a highly-anticipated super-middleweight title fight. Going into the bout, Canelo held the WBA, WBC, and The Ring gold, while Saunders held the WBO Title. All four championships were on the line. Canelo scored the eighth-round TKO victory when Saunders didn’t get off his stool for the ninth round.
Saunders’ co-trainer, Ben Davison, told iFL TV that Saunders didn’t want fellow trainer Mark Tibbs to stop the fight (h/t Mirror).
“There’s a very misconstrued opinion of what happened in the corner. Billy Joe came back in the corner and sat down, I came up and whispered in his ear and said ‘you’ve proven you belong at this level and you’ll get another shot because this fight was close.’
“He was growing into the fight but I told him we had to pull it, and that’s why he shook his head as if to say ‘no, I’m going back out there.’ I think he even said something about how he could go orthodox.
“He only shook his head to say ‘don’t pull the fight’ but we had to do what we had to do. Billy Joe would have gone back out for the next round, of course he would, but before the round ended it was clear we had to pull this, it was clear straight away.”
Saunders suffered a quadripod fracture that required surgery. Matchroom Boxing’s Eddie Hearn doesn’t expect Saunders to make his return to the ring for a while. With that said, Saunders plans on fighting again once he’s fully healed.