Mexican boxer Saul “Canelo” Alvarez consolidated the Super Middleweight titles Saturday night in Arlington, Texas, by defeating Billy Joe Saunders by a technical knockout in the eighth round of the 12th showdown.
The Englishman never got up from his corner to start the ninth round and the referee ended the match, following recommendations from Saunders’ corner (30-1, 14 Kos). The latter was unable to see with his right eye, having been hit hard by the right of Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs), during the previous round. This was his first professional defeat.
The person who presented himself at the AT&T stadium with the WBO middleweight title had to ditch that belt for “Canelo”, in front of a crowd estimated at more than 70,000.
In addition to obtaining this title, Alvarez maintains the WBA, WBC, and The Ring titles.
The fight started slowly, as the two studied each other, but Alvarez raised him to a higher level. From the second to the fourth round, the 30-year-old Mexican was faster, stronger and more accurate than his opponent.
Then the English got a burst of energy in the fifth to seventh rounds, which seemed to unbalance Alvarez.
There is now only one title obtainable for “Canelo” in the ultra-middleweight category, and that is the IBF title, currently held by US boxer Caleb Plant. Immediately after the battle, the Mexican demanded that this battle be fought and all titles unified into the Super Middleweight.