Coach tips Hatfield Olympian Billy Joe as future champion
PUBLISHED: 15:34 17 January 2009 | UPDATED: 22:09 26 October 2009
BOXER Billy Joe Saunders coach Danny Hoy believes the Hatfield fighter has what it takes to be a future world champion. The Hoddesdon Boxing Academy coach has worked with Saunders for a number of years, and this is set to continue as the Romany fighter e
BOXER Billy Joe Saunders' coach Danny Hoy believes the Hatfield fighter has what it takes to be a future world champion.
The Hoddesdon Boxing Academy coach has worked with Saunders for a number of years, and this is set to continue as the Romany fighter enters the professional arena.
And Hoy believes the 19-year-old has what it takes to become a household name under the guidance of the Frank Warren Sports Network stable.
"I think his style has always suited the professional circuit, but it will be a challenge for both of us," said Hoy.
"I am absolutely delighted to be working with Billy Joe as he looks to progress in boxing.
"He is a really loyal kid and I hope I can repay some of that by helping him to results in the ring.
"There will be a lot of pressure on him and everyone will expect wonders, but I really do believe that he is world title material.
"I have known Billy Joe for years now; I know his capabilities and know what he is all about and I have seen things in his work that I haven't seen in other fighters so I know he will be a success."
Hoy has been busy working out training and sparring schedules with former amateur welterweight Saunders over the last few weeks, and he expects the hard work to continue.
And Billy Joe, whose family live on travellers' site near Hatfield on the A414, has been sparring with fellow Olympian and Beijing gold medallist James DeGale as he prepares for his first fight in late February.
Hoy added: "We've been working with James DeGale's trainer Jim McDonnell and sparring with some of his fighters which has been good.
"Planning everything takes up a lot of time, and Billy is training twice a day to prepare for his first fight.
"It's obviously an exciting time for Billy, but also for myself, but I have got to look at it as a job because at the end of the day there's work to be done."
Hoy believes the first three fights will provide solid grounding for the Herts hitter as he attempts to make a name for himself in professional boxing.
And the likelihood is that the opponents he will face could well be relatively unknown quantities.
"Once the first three fights are out of the way, it might be a chance to change our tactics with Billy," said Hoy.
"I really think after the first few fights he will have settled into it and will be ready to show everyone just how good a boxer he is."
The Olympians, which will feature Saunders along with DeGale and Frankie Gavin, make their pro debuts in Birmingham on February 28,