Ireland’s Lee (34-2-1, 24 KOs) will make the first defense of his 160-pound title against England’s Saunders (22-0, 12 KOs), the WBO’s No. 1 middleweight contender, this Saturday, Dec. 19, live on SHO EXTREME (5 p.m. ET/PT) from Manchester Arena.
The SHOWTIME BOXING INTERNATIONAL offering of the BoxNation telecast will feature analysis from SHOWTIME® boxing experts Brian Custer, Al Bernstein, Paulie Malignaggi and guest analyst and WBA Middleweight World Champion Daniel Jacobs. An encore presentation of the bout will air on SHO EXTREME later that evening at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
“This is it – fight time tomorrow night. All the training is done, my weight is perfect and I’m ready for Billy Joe Saunders.
“I’ve won this world title and I’m not letting it go. Saunders will put up a good fight, but this belt is staying with me.”
BILLY JOE SAUNDERS
“All the talking is done. We’ve talked and talked for as long as I can remember, now we just need to let our fists do the talking.
“Just a few more hours now until there’s a new WBO World Middleweight Champion of the World from Hatfield, England.”
THE WBO MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP OF THE WORLD
12 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 160 lb
ANDY LEE (11st 5lbs 12oz) vs, BILLY JOE SAUNDERS 11st 6lbs
THE WBO WORLD SUPER-WELTERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
12 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 154 lbs
LIAM SMITH (11st) vs. JIMMY KELLY 10st 13lbs
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THE WBO INTERCONTINENTAL SUPER-FEATHERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
10 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 130 lbs
MITCHELL SMITH (9st 4lbs) vs. GEORGE JUPP (9st 4lbs)
THE VACANT WBO EUROPEAN SUPER-FLYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
10 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 115 lbs
PAUL BUTLER (8st 2lbs 6oz) vs. SILVIO OLTEANU 8st 1lbs 8oz
(MC: Mr Mark Burdis)
THE WBO INTERCONTINENTAL MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
10 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 160 lbs
TOMMY LANGFORD (11st 5lbs 9oz) vs. ROBERT SWEIRZBINSKI (11st 5lbs)
THE COMMONWEALTH AND VACANT BRITISH SUPER-WELTERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
12 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 154 lbs
LIAM WILLIAMS (10st 13lbs 1oz) KRIS CARSLAW (10st 13lbs 2oz)
THE WBO INTERCONTINENTAL SUPER-LIGHTWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
10 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 140 lbs
JACK CATTERALL (10st) NOE NUNEZ RODRIGUEZ (9st 11lbs 4oz)
THE VACANT WBO EUROPEAN LIGHTWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
10 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 135 lbs
TOM STALKER (9st 8lbs 10oz) vs. CRAIG EVANS (9st 8lbs 4oz)
Legendary East End trainer Jimmy Tibbs says Billy Joe Saunders’s preparations for his showdown with Andy Lee have been perfect and believes his man will defeat the big-hitting Irishman.
Saunders challenges Lee for his WBO World Middleweight crown this Saturday (December 19th) at the Manchester Arena in what is expected to be a thriller in the 160lb division, exclusively live on BoxNation.
Tibbs, 68, has trained a who’s who of British boxing including world champions Nigel Benn, Michael Watson and Chris Pyatt, and says there is something special in the Hatfield ace he has trained since the beginning of his career.
“I can’t fault Billy in this camp, he’s in fantastic shape, his weight is right, all the hard work has been done and now he’s got to go out there and do what he’s got to do,” Said Tibbs.
“I’ve had him since day one and I can’t think of another fight he’s been in this kind of shape and you’d expect that as he’s fighting for the world title, but it’s all there maturity, thinking, confidence, strength, stamina, conditioning and the biggest asset of all for a fighter, heart.”
“It’s been a team effort with me and my son Mark who’s handled the strength and conditioning, but Billy is the one who’s got to go out there and defeat Lee, who’s a tough, tough, man and take that world from him and I’ve got full confidence that he’ll do it.
“I’ve worked with many many great fighters and they’ve all had their special qualities, but with Billy there is something more. This is the fight that will take him to another level, he’s worked long and hard for six years for this and his time is now.”