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London, UK (September 17th, 2017)– Billy Joe Saunders retained his WBO middleweight title today in London, outpointing Willie Monroe Jr in something of a dry bout that never really took off, as the styles suggested on paper would be the case.

Saunders won on scores of 115-114, 117-111, and 117-112. BLH scored the fight 115-113, also for Saunders.

Saunders (25-0, 12 KO) was the more physically imposing and willful of the two fighters on the night, as Monroe (21-3, 6 KO) largely stayed on the back foot. The American challenger had his moments in the fight, certainly, including winning the last two on our card, but Saunders did the better work over the majority of the fight, nd was simply a bit too good for his opponent.

After the fight, Saunders offered something of an apology to Monroe for some of the build-up animosity between the two camps, and praised Monroe for giving him a “sturdy test.” Saunders’ young son Stevie also got on the house mic and apologized to Monroe for “punching (him) in the nuts” at yesterday’s weigh-in.

Hackney’s Anthony Yarde (175lbs) may have failed to hit the 175lb limit at the first time of asking yesterday, but the 26-year-old had no such problems tonight after landing often and hard against Budapest’s Norbert Nemesapati (174lbs) in their scheduled 12-round WBO European and vacant Inter-Continental title fight.

Yarde beat Richard Barayani in a single round in July to raise the WBO’s spurious European belt, he floored Nemesapati in twice in round two and the 22-year-old visitor, who took both Callum Smith and Anthony Dirrell into the sixth round before retiring, spent an utterly pointless third round retreating from the heavier artillery of his opponent before retiring in his corner to hand the win to Yarde, who progressed to 13-0 (12 KOs). Nemesapati goes home with a 25-7 (18 early) record.

Yarder recently decided not to meet Hosea Burton in an eliminator for the British title held by Frank Buglioni, which led to a lot criticism, but he believes he is on the right path. “It is still progression,” he said. “The hard work is paying off.

“We made Frank a very big offer, but he didn’t want it,” said Warren. “I’m not going through the charade of fighting some guy who Buglioni knocked out. Frank is fighting Callum Johnson then Burton again next, if he wants the fight we’ll do it.”

“I had 12 amateur fights, this is my 13th professional fight, and look at who I am fighting,” chimed Yarde.

“We are looking to improve each time,” concluded Warren.

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