Billy Joe Saunders 'raring to go' for WBO super-middleweight title fight against Gilberto Ramirez
BILLY JOE SAUNDERS is “raring to go” for a shot at Gilberto Ramirez’s WBO super-middleweight world title.
Saunders, 29, thought he was facing Albanian Shefat Isufi for the WBO 168lb title after Ramirez moved up to light-heavyweight.
But after claiming he was just testing the 175lb waters, and not willing to vacate his strap, Ramirez had onto his belt meaning Saunders will box for the “interim” title at Stevenage’s Lamex Stadium on Saturday May 18.
Ex-WBO middleweight champion Saunders has urged Ramirez to either face him, or vacate the title before the Brit fights Isufi.
Saunders said: “I am raring to go for Ramirez, but if he doesn’t want to face me then give up the title and let me fight for the full championship.
“If it’s not going to happen against me after my ‘interim’ title fight then I would rather him say, now.”
RAMIREZ AT LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHT
Ramirez made a successful light-heavyweight debut on the undercard of Vasyl Lomachenko’s four round destruction of Anthony Crolla on Saturday.
After beating Tommy Karpency in four rounds Mexico’s world champion stated he wants “all the belts” at light-heavyweight.
That announcement seemingly ends any hopes of a unification bout with Callum Smith, which was previously muted.
But Saunders believes the talk of Ramirez fighting Liverpool’s WBA champ means the Mexican is still able to make the super-middleweight limit.
And due to Saunders’ promoter Frank Warren having a working relationship with Top Rank’s Bob Arum, the 2008 Olympian believes the world title fight with Ramirez can be made.
Saunders said: “He has said he can make 12 stone for Callum Smith so I don’t see the problem with myself. If he can make 12 stone for Callum, he can make 12 stone for me.
“I understand the rules of boxing. If you haven’t got the right style, opponents may not want to know you.
“His promoter Bob Arum has a good working relationship with Frank Warren and MTK, and he has most probably had a conversation with Ramirez.
“They know they can make the fight, but do they want it?
“Personally myself, I don’t think Ramirez will go ducking anybody, but unless he 100 per cent knows he’s good at the weight I can’t see him taking the chance of fighting me.
“My way of winning fights is slick boxing so that takes a lot of steam out of the opponent especially if you’re weight-drained."
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