Feature | Oct 12 2018

The ins and outs of Billy Joe Saunders, oxilofrine and VADA

Billy Joe Saunders won't be fighting next weekend and is no longer a world champion. Elliot Worsell, with help from Dominic Ingle and Robert Smith, investigates.
Billy Joe Saunders
Billy Joe Saunders celebrates his win  |  Action Images/Andrew Couldridge

IN competition, Billy Joe Saunders has won 26 consecutive professional fights, reigned as WBO world middleweight champion since 2015, and was last seen producing one of the finest performances of the year – that year being 2017 – against David Lemieux in Canada.

Out of competition, however, it’s a different story. Bouts of ill-discipline were seemingly ironed out when hooking up with trainer Dominic Ingle in Sheffield, yet still Saunders harbours a boyish, troublemaking streak that has meant his extracurricular activities continue to overshadow the good work he produces in gloves.

Recent social media videos, for instance, landed him in hot water (to the tune of a £100,000 fine) with the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBC), while a scheduled WBO title defence against Demetrius Andrade, set for next Saturday (October 20) in Boston, Massachusetts, is now off after the Massachusetts State Athletic Commission’s (MSAC) denied him a licence.


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