Hatfield boxer Billy Joe dazzles on professional debut

HATFIELD boxer Billy Joe Saunders made a sensational professional debut in Birmingham last night (Saturday). The 19-year-old Olympian from Herts claimed a second-round win over Hungarian Attila Molnar at the National Indoor Arena. Taking to the ring for t

HATFIELD boxer Billy Joe Saunders made a sensational professional debut in Birmingham last night (Saturday).

The 19-year-old Olympian from Herts claimed a second-round win over Hungarian Attila Molnar at the National Indoor Arena.

Taking to the ring for the first time without a headguard and vest, southpaw Saunders impressed the appreciative Birmingham crowd with a classy exhibition of his boxing skills.

Now trained by veteran Jimmy Tibbs, he never looked in any danger on his debut into the paid ranks and clinically dismantled his Hungarian opponent inside two rounds.

The Romany gypsy fighter, who lives on the Holwell travellers' site on the A414, tore into his Eastern European rival from the first bell.

Saunders seemed to land punches at will, hitting Molnar with a succession of heavy combinations, stiff jabs, counters and hooks.

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It was all too much for the Hungarian and the referee eventually stopped the contest in the second of four rounds to mark the beginning of what should be a very successful professional career for the Hatfield hitman.

Teenager Billy Joe was the first of promoter Frank Warren's three Olympians to climb into the ring in front of Sky Sports' cameras.

Home favourite Frankie Gavin also claimed a stoppage win over Georgian fighter George Kadaria, while Beijing gold medallist James DeGale was taken the distance before beating Vepkhia Tchilaia, also from Georgia.

Full ringside report and reaction from the Billy Joe Saunders corner to follow...

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