Billy Joe Saunders threatens to walk away from Canelo Alvarez fight over ring size

Ben Burrows
·2-min read
British super middleweight boxer Billy Joe Saunders (Getty Images)
British super middleweight boxer Billy Joe Saunders (Getty Images)

Billy Joe Saunders has threatened to walk away from his super-middleweight blockbuster with Canelo Alvarez this weekend over a disagreement about the size of the ring.

The unbeaten Brit will go toe to toe with the pound-for-pound king at AT&T Stadium in Texas on Saturday night.

The WBA, WBC and WBO super-middleweight championships are all at stake but build-up to the long-anticipated clash is now being dominated by the ring they will do battle in and, more specifically, how big it is.

“There’s a little bit of a hiccup today that everyone’s trying to resolve,” he told Talksport on Tuesday. “The problem is I’ve come over here and they’re trying to chuck me in a phone box of a boxing ring.

“It [the stadium] is hundreds and hundreds of feet long and they wanna stick an 16/18ft ring in the middle of it. For me, that’s just unacceptable. I want a 24ft ring and they’re saying it’s not gonna happen.

“I’ve left it to my team and I’m sure they’ll resolve it, otherwise there won’t be any fight. You can’t just fly me in here, show me the ring that we’re using. I’ve been training all of my camp in a 24ft ring, it’s a unification fight, not a British title.

“It’s like someone training on a 200m running track and someone training on a 400m running track, there’s a big difference.

“We all know his style of fighting, anybody who knows boxing knows how this fight – – how I’ve got in my head of it playing out. And he’s got his own style of fighting and his game plan, and I know his game plan.

“His game plan’s not waiting around, his game plan is coming to me and I want somewhere where I can move and get my boxing off.”

Saunders’ father, Tom, echoes his son’s disappointment and has again turned his ire on Eddie Hearn, the fight’s promoter.

“Eddie Hearn – I don’t like to keep running the man down, he is Billy Joe’s promoter and he has delivered this fight, but at what cost?,” he told IFL TV.

“He’s not working with us, he’s working against us in every opportunity.

“To face Canelo in an 18/20ft ring? That’s ridiculous. We’ve left it at 22ft, no lower. Inner ring has got to be 22ft otherwise we’re flying home.”

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