Billy Joe Saunders gunning for Gennady Golvkin after boxing masterclass against David Lemieux

PUBLISHED: 09:51 17 December 2017 | UPDATED: 09:51 17 December 2017

Billy Joe Saunders produced a boxing masterclass to retain his WBO World Middleweight title against David Lemieux. Picture: CRAIG WATSON/PA WIRE

Billy Joe Saunders produced a boxing masterclass to retain his WBO World Middleweight title against David Lemieux. Picture: CRAIG WATSON/PA WIRE

PA Wire/PA Images

Billy Joe Saunders produced a boxing masterclass against David Lemieux to retain his WBO World Middleweight crown and then sent a clear message to Gennady Golovkin - "fight me now".

The Hatfield fight ace was in imperious form against the Montreal native in his own backyard, winning a unanimous decision 120-108, 117-111, 118-110.

Even the hostile home crowd in the Place Bell Arena in Laval, Quebec, couldn’t derail the performance of the former GB Olympian as he landed shot after shot.

And after the fight Saunders made it extremely clear what his next intention is.

Speaking on BT Sport he said: “Golovkin, you kept saying you want my WBO belt when I was 14 stone, out of shape and wasn’t in love with boxing,

“Then you wanted to fight me. Fight me now. Now fight me, cos we’ll be seeing a different story. You’ll be punching fresh air.”

Golovkin and Canelo foughtto draw last time out and

But Saunders’ display against Lemieux will definitely have North American fight fans clamouring for the unification bout, despite the boos in the arena.

The 28-year-old was quicker than his Canadian counterpart, hitting jabs and body shots at will while quick footwork ensured he was constantly out of reach of any counter punches.

The USA Today newspaper was suitably impressed, citing Saunders’ “superb boxing acumen and a powerful and accurate right jab” in a display that “showed a world that knew little about him that he could be a force to be reckoned with in the middleweight division”.

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