News: Billy Joe Saunders; Frankie Gavin; Lauren Price
WBO Statement on Billy Joe Saunders
WBO President Francisco ‘Paco’ Valcárcel, Esq reacted on Billy Joe Saunders’ public comments regarding his world title status:
“B.J. Saunders has voluntarily vacated the WBO Middleweight Title, and publicly apologized for his violation of the Massachusetts Athletic Commission’s anti-doping regulations”.
“Therefore, the clash between Demetrius Andrade and Walter Kautondonkwa scheduled for October 20th will now be for the vacant World Crown”.
“Also, I will recommend to the WBO Executive Committee that Saunders receives a six month suspension for his transgression”.
No Planes; Just Trains, Ferry’s and Automobiles For Gavin
Frankie Gavin travelled by boat to Bilbao this week as preparation steps up ahead of his European Welterweight Title clash with Champion Kerman Lejerraga next month.
The former World Amateur Champion takes on hard-hitting Lejerraga at the Bilbao Exhibition Centre on Saturday, 17th November and travelled to Spain for yesterday’s pre-fight press conference.
Despite travelling the world as an amateur, a ‘bad flight’ led to a fear of planes for the 33 year-old who travelled to the Basque Country by boat for the press conference and will repeat the feat fight week.
“Everyone knows I don’t like flying,” Gavin told bcb-promotions.com, who now manage the former British & Commonwealth Champion. “I had a bad flight and now I chose not to fly.
“It was fine anyway. I caught a train to Plymouth and then jumped on the ferry to Santander. It was an overnight crossing so I slept most of the time and then got picked up and brought to Bilbao. I’ve had a good few days with the team and learning about the region. I’d like to thank MGZ promotions, and in particular Inigo Hernandez, for their hospitality.”
Gavin set sail on Sunday, arriving on Monday before training Tuesday and Wednesday and returning home today.
“I met (stablemate) Brad Thomas out there and we trained together and pushed each other on. Errol (Johnson – Head of Boxing at BCB) and Brad flew out so I’ve had a couple of days of good training and got to meet Kerman for the first time at the press conference.
“There was mutual respect there.”
Gavin is under no illusions as to the task at hand. ‘The Revolver’, a Bilbao native, is unbeaten in 26 professional fights with 21 KO’s to his name. He’s stopped fellow Brits Bradley Skeete and Denton Vassell along the way and, although Gavin has also defeated the pair, the Brummie boxer is rightly wary of his opponent’s power.
“Kerman is a hard hitter,” he added. “He’s a tough lad. He likes to brawl and I know I’m up against it a bit. I’m not Denton Vassell or Bradley Skeete though. Bradley was out here last year and he froze a little. The atmosphere is intimidating but I’m prepared for that. It’s only me and Kerman in the ring and I know I’ve not got many chances left.
“However I have to get there; however I have to win, I’m bringing that European title back to the UK.”
Frankie Gavin supporters are encouraged to contact FR Ringside Gym direct to purchase tickets, priced at £50
WALES’ Lauren Price guaranteed herself at least a bronze medal today at the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in New Delhi, when she defeated Elzbieta Wojcki of Poland in her middleweight quarter-final.
A canny display of counter punching saw Price land the cleaner shots against the tall and aggressive Pole to earn a split decision victory on three of the five judges’ scorecards.
She will face the number one seed, reigning European Champion and two-time world championship medallist, Nouchka Fontijin of Holland in Friday’s semi-final.
Price said: “I knew that my opponent would come forward, so the plan was to draw her in and use my speed to counter her. The first round was close, but I think I really picked it up in the second and third and deserved the win. I am absolutely thrilled to win a medal – it has not really sunk in yet.
“I have got two days now, so I can prepare with the coaches for the semi-final. I know that she is a very experienced opponent, but I have got belief in my ability and I am going to make sure I go out there and give it my all.”
Price, 24, is the sole boxer from Great Britain left in the tournament after England’s Natasha Gale lost her quarter-final in another 3-2 split to the number two seed, Li Qian of China.
Gale used her strength and fitness to put the highly experienced Chinese boxer under intense pressure tracking her around the ring.
But despite landing several heavy shots, it was not enough to secure her a passage into the semi-finals.
Price’s semi-final on Friday will be in the evening session in New Delhi, which starts at 1030 GMT.