Saunders-Eubank Jr sanctioned as final WBO 160lb eliminator
By Scott Gilfoid: #2 WBO Billy Joe Saunders (20-0, 11 KOs) and #9 WBO Chris Eubank Jr (18-0, 13 KOs) will be fighting in a final World Boxing Organization middleweight eliminator bout on November 29th when they face each other at the ExCel Arena in London, UK. The WBO officially sanctioned the Saunders-Eubank Jr fight as the WBO 160lb eliminator on Friday.
The winner of the Saunders vs. Eubank Jr fight will face the winner of the December 13th fight between #1 WBO Matt Korobov and #3 WBO Andy Lee, who will be fighting for the vacant WBO middleweight title.
The Saunders vs. Eubank Jr will now have more on the line rather than the fight just being a domestic level scrap. It’s going to be tough for the winner of the Saunders-Eubank Jr fight to compete against Korobov, because this is a guy that can really fight and he’s got the power to blow both of these guys out of there.
It’s doubtful that Andy Lee will get past Korobov on 12/13 due to Lee’s stamina and chin problems.
The only way I can see Lee beating Korovbov is if he catches him with a big left hook like he did John Jackson in his last fight. In that case, Lee will likely be trailing badly in the fight when/if he catches Korobov with a big shot to score a knockout. However, I don’t see it happening because Korobov has a solid chin, and he doesn’t leave himself wide open the way John Jackson did against Lee.
Saunders is really up against it in the Eubank Jr fight, because he’s not athletically talented, and he doesn’t have the punching power that he has. Without the talent and power to compete, Saunders will need to depend on his chin to carry him through this fight like Carl Froch does in the super middleweight division.
There’s a chance, such as it is, that Saunders could take Eubank Jr into the deep end and drown him late. That’s the only way I can see Saunders winning this fight considering that he’s out of his league in terms of talent against Eubank Jr.