Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez retained his world title by defeating Avni Yildirim on Saturday
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez defeated Avni Yildirim to fight a world title unification match with British Billy Joe Saunders on May 8th.
Mexican Alvarez drove past Turkish challenger Yildirim on Saturday to keep his WBC and WBA titles before promoter Eddie Hearn confirmed the upcoming fight with Saunders.
The Briton’s WBO title will also be at stake when the two meet.
The location of the fight has not yet been determined.
The 30-year-old Alvarez is a four-division world champion who now has a record 55 wins, one loss and two draws, including 37 knockout games.
The 31-year-old Saunders can look back on an unbeaten record after winning all 30 professional fights with 11 KOs.
The IBF belt is held by American Caleb Plant (21-0) but winning for Canelo will bring him one step closer to becoming the first undisputed super middleweight champion in boxing history.
“Nobody did,” said Alvarez. “I want to make history. Nobody did it at 168 [pounds]. “
After the fight was announced, Saunders said he was “ready for rock and roll”.
“You have to dare to be great and you won’t be great if you don’t beat the big guys,” Saunders said.
“I think I’m the only one with footwork, know-how, skills, mindset and wit who can unlock that door in Canelo.”
Routine victory for Canelo
Yildirim retired before the fourth round began after being knocked down by the Mexican in the third in the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami by the Mexican.
“I wanted to have a great fight and did what I had to do,” said Alvarez.
“I needed a knockout and I did. It doesn’t matter if they are bigger, if they have more range or if they have a good coach.
“I came to do my job, I came here to win.”
Alvarez fought in his first fight since beating Britain’s Callum Smith in December and dominated his opponent with a crisp left-right combo.