Billy Joe Saunders puts his 26-0 record on the line when he defends his WBO World Middleweight title against Demetrius Andrade on October 20 at the TD Garden in Boston.
The outspoken and highly talented Briton is bidding to improve his reputation further following a standout victory over David Lemieux last December, having seen two attempts to fight compatriot Martin Murry scuppered due to injury.
Addressing his forthcoming clash, where he faces a fellow-undefeated fighter in Andrade (25-0), Saunders had some choice words for his old foe, Lemieux, at a recent media event.
“This is such a big fight. The two main men at Middleweight are GGG and Canelo – and neither of them wants to fight Demetrius or me. There’s a lot of smoke and mist in the division right now, and when it clears up, I will be the man standing there,” said Saunders.
“All jokes and trash talk aside, this is going to be a really good fight. Does anyone want to fight Demetrius? No. Does anyone want to fight me? No. We have to fight each other to prove who the number one guy is.
“Technically, we are the best two in the division, and the winner is going to be number one. I’m World champion, I’ve been more active, I’ve boxed the better opposition – but I have to beat this man.
“David Lemieux is a bum, a bum – he’s not worth talking about, and I don’t take any credit from beating him. But I’ve been in with and easily handled World-class opposition – I’ve been in with Chris Eubank Jr and dealt with him, been in with Andy Lee and dealt with him, Willie Monroe had no heart or desire to win.
“There’s too much at stake in this fight to even think about losing – and I will prove that I am number one. If I turn up at my 100 percent best, it’s good enough to beat him. He’s a great fighter, and he’s been avoided. Our paths have crossed, and we have to fight. The winner is number one.”
Lemieux is scheduled to battle another former Saunders opponent in Gary O’Sullivan this weekend. The Hatfield man has already backed the Irishman to inflict yet another loss on the French-Canadian ex-IBF ruler.