Opinion | Nov 26 2014

The appeal of Billy Joe Saunders versus Chris Eubank Jnr shows how boxing renews itself

Daniel Herbert compares the fascinating Billy Joe Saunders-Chris Eubank Jnr to a famous domestic grudge match from yesteryear
EubankSaunders

IT’S a great time to be a boxing fan, what with a massive weekend just gone and another to come in the form of Frank Warren’s promotion at the ExCel Arena in London’s Docklands. Topping the bill the heavyweight return between bitter rivals  Tyson Fury and Dereck Chisora, but for me the most intriguing match on the show is  Billy Joe Saunders against Chris Eubank Jnr. Saunders defends his British, Commonwealth and European middleweight belts and the winner of this 12-rounder can look towards a world title crack next year.

The champion is a former Olympian (2008, Beijing) who has won all 20 pro fights, 11 inside the distance. Eubank Jnr had a less exalted amateur background but has been around the sport all his life, being the son of the former two-weight world champion Chris Snr. He too has a 100 per record at 18-0 (13 early), but his competition has been at a much lower level than Saunders.

For every fan who reckons Saunders’ experience will prove decisive, there is another who thinks Eubank Jnr’s power will bring him victory. One can make a compelling case either way.