Billy Joe Saunders vs Matthew Hall Preview March 21
Billy Joe Saunders will be attempting to defend his Commonwealth and British Middleweight crowns on Thursday March 21 when he takes on challenger Matthew Hall at York Hall in London, England. The unbeaten Saunders will enter the ring with a perfect record of 16-0 with 10 Kos while Hall’s mark is 25-6 with 16 Kos.
The 23-year-old Saunders of Hatfield, fought for Britain at the 2008 Olympic Summer Games in Beijing, China. He’s a southpaw who likes to fight aggressively and has pretty fast hands. He’s a fine combination puncher and doesn’t mind fighting on the inside. He hasn’t really faced any elite opponents so far in his career since turning pro in 2009 and his last three bouts were against the likes of Bradley Pryce, Jarrod Fletcher, and Nick Blackwell.
The 28-year-old Hall, who hails from Manchester, is a former holder of the Commonwealth Junior Middleweight title. He started his career like a house on fire after turning pro back in 2002, by winning 23 out of his first 24 bouts. He’s struggled quite a bit since then and has been beaten in five of his last eight contests. Hall’s got pretty quick hands as well and is pretty strong and physical.
Saunders is the better boxer though since he’s very accurate and can fight just as well backing off as he can going forwards. Hall’s best chance here is to try and outmuscle Saunders on the inside if possible. Hall’s just over 5-feet-7 inches tall with a 65-inch reach. One of Hall’s most noticeable problems is his chin as he’s been stopped three times in his six losses.
Saunders will have to step up in class sooner or later, but since he’s just 23 he can perhaps be forgiven for waiting a couple of more fights to do so. There are some decent British middleweights at the moment in Darren Barker, Matthew Macklin, and Martin Murray and Saunders will likely move up to that class of fighter within the next year. He said he can’t wait to take on one of them and is confident that he could beat them all. He said that he’s not boasting, but is just confident in his ability and training team.
Saunders would like to add a European championship to his resume before thinking about stepping in with a world champion. He said Hall should be a pretty tough test since he’s strong and likes to come forward and pressure his opponents. He added that he’ll be taking him seriously and is ready to do battle.
Saunders is the better boxer here, but he still needs to be aware of Hall’s decent punching power. Look for Saunders to come out on top though either by a unanimous decision or a late stoppage.