BILLY JOE SAUNDERS says his fight against Canelo Alvarez is back ON – but a replacement is being flown out anyway just in case.
The eagerly-anticipated super-middleweight title unification bout with the pound-for-pound king was in danger of falling through due to a row over the size of the ring.
The pair were initially set to trade blows in a 20ft ring at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium, which Team Saunders thought gave Mexican mauler Canelo an unfair advantage.
Saunders, along with his best mate and WBC king Tyson Fury, wanted a 22ft ring, at least.
But now there appears to have been a compromise reached.
Saunders shared a video on his social media last night, saying: “Hey all, just wanted to say, I’m pleased the issue is sorted because obviously you can see I tagged Eddie Hearn and Canelo in the last video.
“The ring is not a problem, so thumbs are up, chilling back watching a few films, Eddie, get the ring in mate.”
Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn was seemingly worried enough to have fellow Brit John Ryder ready to step in for Saunders.
Boxing News reported that Ryder, who fought and lost to Saunders in 2013, ‘is flying out to Texas and has declared he is willing to jump in and face Canelo’.
They add: “Ryder was training for a fight in June and set to fly out for promotional work regardless.”
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Saunders cast doubt over the fight by no-showing for his first face-off with the four-weight world champion.
And things got heated after a member of the Brit’s team taunted Canelo by saying: “What’s happening with the ring?
“We’ve come a long way, grow some b****cks.”
Canelo didn’t take kindly to the remark and replied in English: “You are a f***ing p***y.”
Saunders’ dad, Tommy, sparked serious concerns on Tuesday evening when he claimed the ‘fight’s off‘.
He told iFL TV: “There’s nothing in the contract about ring size.
“Negotiations have broke down… They’ve said it’s either 20ft or book your flights home. The fight’s off.”