Hatfield boxer Billy Joe sparring with Olympic champion DeGale

PUBLISHED: 10:09 14 February 2009 | UPDATED: 21:44 26 October 2009

Boxer Billy Joe Saunders

Boxer Billy Joe Saunders

HATFIELD boxer Billy Joe Saunders and Olympic gold medallist James DeGale are working together ahead of their professional debuts. The deadly duo will have their first fights in the paid ranks on February 28 at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham. An

HATFIELD boxer Billy Joe Saunders and Olympic gold medallist James DeGale are working together ahead of their professional debuts.

The deadly duo will have their first fights in the paid ranks on February 28 at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham.

And to ensure they are both in tip-top condition they have been sparring together ahead of their big night.

It's a throwback to the Beijing Games where they represented Great Britain, DeGale going on to win Olympic gold.

"It's great working with James again," said 19-year-old Saunders.

"We must have sparred hundreds of rounds together when we were up in Sheffield at the Institute of Sport, and we are always learning from each other.

"The team spirit in Beijing was superb, and I know we'll be looking to recreate that when we box together.

"The professional side of things has a reputation for being a bit selfish.

"But with us all boxing on the same cards up and down the country, it's a bit like being back in the elite squad, and we'll keep driving each other on."

Billy Joe will face former Hungarian light-welterweight champion Attila Molnar in his first pro bout.

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