BILLY JOE SAUNDERS is on course to challenge for the world title that he had to vacate last year.

In 2018 Saunders was due to defend his WBO middleweight belt against Demetrius Andrade. But an adverse anti-doping finding in America saw that contest cancelled and ultimately Billy Joe vacated his title.

Andrade won the belt against Walter Kautondokwa and successfully defended Artur Akavov on January 18.

Saunders maintained that he was compliant with UK anti-doping regulations, if not those of Massachusetts, and has been installed as the mandatory challenger for the WBO belt Andrade now holds. That fight will happen eventually.

“They’ve called purse bids,” his promoter Frank Warren said. “We’ve got a negotiation period then we’ll go to purse bids.”

He continued, “Good news for Bill, we worked very hard to get him back in the number one spot. He should be the champion.”

Billy Joe Saunders

Given that he was prepared to go to America for the fight with Andrade as a defending champion he will be quite prepared to go to the States now as a challenger.