Bad Blood was the name chosen for last weekend's memorable fight night. The main bout was Dereck Chisora against Tyson Fury, but most boxing fans also had their eyes set on the battle that preceded the intense rematch- Chris Eubank Jr vs Billy Joe Saunders.
With all the build up before this big middleweight bout, 'Bad Blood' was only title that gave it justice. Eubank Snr, a former two weight division world champion, described his son as "the most dangerous young man" he's ever come across. But that fatherly confidence wasn't enough to see young Chris victorious in the ExCel London, last Saturday night.
The judges had it at 115-114 Saunders, 116-113 Eubank, 115-113 Saunders, culminating in a split decision for the 25-year-old southpaw. Saunders will now be looking at the Korobov-Lee fight, this December, after earning himself a world title shot.
Where can defeated Eubank go now?
Eubank can take positives. Even Saunders himself was surprised by his quality, revealing after the fight: "He is better than what I thought he was."
Eubank seemed nervy in the opening stages. Saunders controlled the first five rounds with relative ease, but Eubank began to gain confidence after landing several hard shots. It was too little too late. Eubank Snr, sporting a rather unique suit to match his rather eccentric personality, gave instructions from the corner, demanding a knockout. Ronnie Davies, head trainer for team Eubank, was pushed aside.
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Saunders, in the end, survived. His opponent was going for the knockout, throwing wild upper cuts, hoping to land one big one.
"I thought I won the fight, but I have to congratulate him," said Eubank.
"I thought I won the fight, but I have to congratulate him"
"I'll be back" he ended with, looking justifiably exhausted.
The 12th was cat and mouse. Eubank chased Saunders around the ring, throwing wildly in the process. He did end strongly, however. Eubank faces a tough question now. How can he move on from this? Or even so, how can he take control of his own career?
It would be unintelligible to suggest Eubank Snr shouldn't play any part in his sons advancement, but the debate now is just how much of a part should he have, if he wants his son to reach the levels he believes he can.
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