Boxing: Billy Joe Saunders beats Martin Murray via unanimous decision

Billy Joe Saunders beats Martin Murray via unanimous decision

Billy Joe Saunders sees off Martin Murray to retain his WBO super-middleweight title.

Saunders comfortably retained his WBO super-middleweight title with a unanimous points win against Martin Murray at the Wembley Arena.

Saunders, 31, in his first fight in a year, was too sharp and strong for his durable 38-year-old opponent, who was hurt several times throughout the contest.

Murray went down under a barrage of punches in the fourth round, but appeared to have lost his balance and no knockdown was given.

Saunders, who reiterated his desire for a blockbusting fight with Mexico’s Saul Canelo Alvarez, extended his unbeaten record to 30-0 to join Josh Warrington as the current British boxer with the longest unbeaten run.

Saunders looked to force the issue from round one and the southpaw’s jab began to find its target in the second, with Murray struggling to find his range.

The champion looked the classier fighter and landed several left hooks to Murray’s body before landing two big left uppercuts in the third round.

Saunders’ superior hand speed was telling, while his jab pierced Murray’s guard again in the fourth, which he comfortably lost.

Murray appeared hurt at the start of the fifth, but Saunders eased off the pace and continued to dominate in the sixth as he fired off more two-handed combinations.

Saunders caught his man again in the seventh and although Murray stepped up his work rate in rounds eight and nine, he never troubled the champion.