WBO middleweight world champion, Billy Joe Saunders (23-0, 12KOs) is set to defend his title against Ukraine’s Max Bursak (32-4-1, 15KOs) on April 30th at the Copper Box Arena in London.
Saunders first defence of his belt is sandwiched in between two other middleweight title fights in the surrounding weeks. Gennady Golovkin defends his titles against Dominic Wade on April 23rd and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez defends his WBC strap against Amir Khan on May 7th.
Saunders vs. Bursak is perhaps the least attractive pairing of the three, however, it provides Saunders with both a comfortable first defence and a decent warm-up fight in anticipation of a big summer showdown.
“Nothing comes easy in boxing and I’m definitely not taking Bursak for granted,” said Saunders. “He’s a good, good, fighter and very dangerous. If I don’t come in 100 percent then he could cause an upset in my first title defence.”
Bursak is definitely keen to cause an upset and by way of knockout too. “Unfortunately for Saunders, this is going to be his first and last defence of the title because I will be taking the title off him when I face him on Saturday 30th April at the Copper Box Arena,” claimed Bursak. “I am telling Saunders to be prepared and train hard because he will be in for the fight of his life and I will be looking for the knockout.”
On the evening’s undercard, we will also see Ovill McKenzie (25-12-1, 13KOs) square off against Dmymtro Kucher (23-1-1, 17KOs) for the vacant European cruiserweight title.
Ryan Walsh (20-1-1, 9KOs) will also battle mandatory challenger James Tennyson (16-1 13KOs) for the British featherweight title.