Saunders puts title on the line

Bradley Saunders

Bradley Saunders

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NEW WBO Intercontinental light-welterweight champion Bradley Saunders faces another tough test next month when he defends his unbeaten record against durable Frenchman Christopher Sebire in Manchester.

The fight is part of a big show at the Phones 4u Arena on July 26, headlined by Derek Chisora taking on the unbeaten Tyson Fury for the vacant British, European and WBO International heavyweight titles, a bout doubling up as the final eliminator for the WBO world championship.

Sedgefield star Saunders has won eight of his 10 victories by knockout and is raring to go, having produced the most emphatic performance to date with a career-best body shot dumping out experienced Finn Ville Piispanen in just 81 seconds in Newcastle last month, to claim the WBO InterContinental belt.

Saunders said: “Sebire is bigger and stronger as he’s fought at welterweight and up at light-middleweight, so maybe he’ll take me a few rounds more.

“He’ll be coming to win like he always does so I know that I won’t have to go looking for him which will make it exciting for the fans.

“He is a very tough guy who goes the distance with everybody. Sebire has taken (Bradley) Skeete and (Chris) Jenkins the distance, so I’ll be looking forward to getting in there and doing some rounds with him.”

The previous win in Newcastle launched 2008 Beijing Olympian Saunders straight into the WBO world rankings after just his 10th fight, where Ruslan Provodnikov, Juan Manuel Marquez and Lucas Matthysse occupy the top spots.

On his future plans, Saunders added: “The new WBO world rankings are out and Team Saunders are on the move. Straight in at No.12 and there some top names for me to be in there with in these next 18 months.

“Now that I’m ranked in the WBO. the world title is in my sights. but I want to get some more rounds in so I can get some experience in the bag and show people what I can do in the later rounds.

“I get even stronger as the fight goes on and can do some real damage.”

Tickets for Manchester, priced at £40, £75, £150 and £200, are available from Saunders on 07861 226986.