Billy Joe Saunders was all set to finally defend his WBO middleweight title for the first time this Saturday in Cardiff, Wales, but medical paperwork from opponent Artur Akavov has caused yet another delay, pushing the bout back to December 3.
The paperwork for Akavov (16-1, 7 KO) was in Russian, according to promoter Frank Warren, and wasn’t quite complete, causing the delay, and not allowing for the fight to take place on Saturday.
Saunders (23-0, 12 KO) will now defend at the Lagoon Leisure Centre in Paisley, Scotland, on a card that also features the return of junior welterweight prospect Jack Catterall.
This is all quite a chore to get what is a lousy title defense done and move Saunders on to something hopefully more meaningful. The 27-year-old Saunders eked by Andy Lee last December to win the belt, but hasn’t fought at all in 2016. He was scheduled to fight in the spring against Max Bursak, but pulled out due to injury. The fight with Akavov was originally set for October 29, then moved to October 22, then moved to November 26, and now to December 3.