Billy Joe Saunders takes a pop at Chris Eubank

World title contender Billy Joe Saunders has taken a pop at former boxer and ‘I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!’ contestant Chris Eubank.

The undefeated London fighter, who faces middleweight world champion Andy Lee on December 19th at the Manchester Arena, took a swipe at the father of his arch-rival Chris Eubank Jr, labelling him “annoying” and “pathetic” during his stint on the ITV show.

Eubank was evicted from the jungle earlier this week and Saunders says he knows where his son picked up his unlikeable qualities.

“I’ve not seen much of the shows because I’ve been training in Spain for my fight later this month but from what I have seen and been told his dad is just as annoying and pathetic as his son,” said Saunders.

“He was all talk when he was in the jungle but didn’t do much to help the other contestants out so I can see where his son picked up that trait of just talking a good game.

“It’s clear the public didn’t take to him that’s why they voted him out. You can only talk so much before you have to get your hands dirty and back up your words. He couldn’t do it in the jungle and his son can’t do it in the ring,” Saunders said.

Both Saunders and Eubank Jr locked horns a year ago with the Hatfield man coming out on top via a split decision.

If they were to meet again 26-year-old Saunders is convinced he would get the job done in even more emphatic fashion.

“I’ve already taken care of Eubank Jr but would happily hand him another beating once I get past Andy Lee,” said Saunders.

“In fact, if we were to fight again I’m certain that I will knock him out this time round. I’ve been in there with him once before so I have a very good idea now of how he operates.

“That gives me the confidence of knowing that I can stop him next time. It will be a much easier fight for me but I want to go after the world’s best so he’s not really on my radar,” he said.

The former British and European champion also called on Eubank Sr to admit that his time in the ring has passed and to stop calling out old foes in the shape of Nigel Benn, who he shared the ring with twice during his career.

“They had a couple of really good fights back in the 90s but Eubank needs to stop living in the past.

“Boxing is a young man’s sport and I don’t think he was serious when calling out Nigel Benn. It’s in the past now.

“Eubank had the chance to fight Benn again for the third time years ago but I don’t really think he fancied it. It’s easy to talk but when the time comes to sign the contract or get in the ring that’s when things go quite,” said Saunders.

Tickets for Andy Lee vs Billy Joe Saunders at the Manchester Arena on December 19th starting from just £40 are available from frankwarren.com , ticketmaster.co.uk or eventim.co.uk. Or watch exclusively live on BoxNation (Sky 437/490HD, Virgin 525, TalkTalk 415, online or app). Visit boxnation.com to subscribe.

Showtime to televise Andy Lee vs Billy Joe Saunders

SHOWTIME Sports® will present the WBO Middleweight World Championship between defending titlist Andy Lee and unbeaten challenger Billy Joe Saunders on Saturday, Dec. 19, live on SHO EXTREME (5 p.m. ET/PT) from Manchester, England.

The SHOWTIME BOXING INTERNATIONAL offering of the Box Nation telecast will feature analysis from SHOWTIME boxing experts Brian Custer, Al Bernstein and Paulie Malignaggi before and after the world championship showdown. An encore presentation of the bout will air on SHO EXTREME later that evening at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

“We’re excited to deliver this important matchup of top middleweights to the U.S. audience,” said Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President and General Manager of SHOWTIME Sports. “The 160-pound class is one of boxing’s hottest and deepest divisions right now, and the winner of this fight should position himself for a major showdown or unification in 2016.”

Ireland’s Lee (34-2-1, 24 KOs) won the vacant WBO title with a sixth-round TKO of then-undefeated Matt Korbov in December 2014. The 6-foot-2, 31-year old was on a six-fight win streak before boxing a split 12-round draw with undefeated former champion Peter Quillin on April 11, 2015, in Brooklyn. Both fighters went down in a highly competitive scrap that was scored 113-112 for Quillin, 113-112 for Lee and 113-113.

Before turning pro Lee was a top amateur and represented Ireland in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.

“It’s great that my fans in the U.S. will get to see the fight between me and Saunders and I guarantee it’s going to be exciting,” Lee said.

Saunders (22-0, 12 KOs), of Hatfield, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom, is the WBO’s No. 1 middleweight contender. The 26-year-old is coming off a fourth-round TKO over Yoannan Bloyer last July 24 in London.

Two starts ago, in the most note-worth victory of his career, the 5-foot-11, Saunders took a 12-round split decision over Chris Eubank Jr. on Nov. 29, 2014, in London. All but one of Saunders’ fights have taken place in England; the other was Northern Ireland.

Saunders was also an accomplished amateur; he represented England in the 2008 Olympic Games as a welterweight at the age of 18. Saunders is the great-grandson of one of Britain’s most famous gypsy bare-knuckle champions, Absolom Beeney.

“This is a massive night for me and I’m excited that it’s going out live to America,” Saunders said. “The U.S. viewers will get to see just what I can do when I face Lee and become world champion. It’s a big boost for me and takes the fight to another level when American TV comes on board and then you know it’s a big fight on the world stage. I hope that (Gennady) Golovkin and (Miguel) Cotto will be both watching because I’m fast approaching their level and they’ll get to see what I’m all about.”

Promoter Frank Warren said, “I’m delighted that SHOWTIME will now be televising Lee vs. Saunders live in the U.S. as it confirms the importance of this fight on the world scene. My relationship with the network goes back many years with fights like Joe Calzaghe vs. Jeff Lacy, Ricky Hatton vs. Kostya Tszyu, Frank Bruno vs. Oliver McCall, plus Naseem Hamed and Nigel Benn fights. I believe that Lee vs. Saunders will be another great fight to add to that list because of what’s at stake for both fighters. What lies ahead for the winner will make them fight to their very best.”

Tyson Fury backs Billy Joe Saunders

Billy Joe Saunders has been backed by the new world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury to become the next world champion from travelling stock and predicts a new era for the sport.

Undefeated ace Saunders, who lives on a travellers’ site in Hatfield, challenges the WBO World Middleweight Champion Andy Lee for his crown on Saturday 19th December at the Manchester Arena, live and exclusive on BoxNation.

The 26-year-old is deep in preparations at the MGM training facility in Marbella for his massive showdown against Lee, but made sure he watched Fury’s sensational upset of long-reigning heavyweight king Wladimir Klitschko.

“Tyson did what he said he was going to do and shook the world,” Said Saunders.

“A lot of people said he couldn’t do it and it was an impossible job, but I backed him from day one to beat Klitschko,”

“He proved that he’s a real champion by going into the lion’s den and beating a true great in Klitschko in his own backyard,”

“No one has done that to Klitschko before and it shouldn’t be underplayed,”

“I couldn’t be happier for him and his achievement. We spoke the next day and he was over the moon about his win as he rightly should be, Britain has a new heavyweight champion of the world,”

“It fantastic that the world heavyweight champion is a travelling lad, the flagship division is now ruled by a traveller, now it’s my turn to bring another world title to our community and for Britain,”

“Tyson said he’s backing me to win the WBO World Middleweight title against Lee and then we’ll both rule.”

“I believe that this is the start of a new era in boxing for gypsy fighters, Tyson’s world champion, I’m going to beat Lee and become the next world champion, and there are plenty more travelling lads coming through who are all potential world champions.”

Frank Warren’s end of year title extravaganza ‘X-Mas Cracker’ is headlined by two massive world title showdowns with WBO World Middleweight Champion Andy Lee defending his title against Billy Joe Saunders and WBO World Super-Welterweight Champion Liam Smith making his first title defence against Jimmy Kelly. A staggering SIX further titles are on the line with Mitchell Smith defending his WBO Intercontinental Super-Featherweight title against George Jupp; Paul Butler challenges for the Vacant WBO European Super-Flyweight Championship against Silvio Olteanu; Tommy Langford defends his WBO Intercontinental Middleweight Championship; Commonwealth Super-Welterweight Champion Liam Williams and Kris Carslaw clash with the Vacant British title also on the line; Jack Catterall defends his WBO Intercontinental Super-Lightweight Championship, and Tom Stalker and Craig Evans clash again for the Vacant WBO European Lightweight Championship. The undercard features Merseyside favourite Joe Selkirk in a six-round contest, Indian superstar Vijender Singh, Anthony Yarde and top Manchester prospects Jack Flattley and Dale Coyne, plus Razza Hamza.

Tickets are priced at £40, £50, £75, £100, £200 and £300 are available from:

www.frankwarren.com