Tonight’s fight between Bille Joe Saunders and Willie Monroe Jr. for the WBO middleweight title became an even bigger contest when the Saunders’ son Stevie punched the American at Friday’s weigh-in.
It was a stunning scene. The boxers were posing on the stage when Stevie, 7, according to BBC Sport, stepped between the pair and struck a low blow at Monroe Jr. before kicking the 30-year-old.
Saunders was criticised when he defended Stevie’s actions on Twitter.
"My son's been taught when a stranger puts their hands on them (to) punch and run away (in) self defence,” Saunders tweeted.
If you watch the footage, it seems that the youngster was planning to hit Monroe Jr. even before the challenger ruffled his hair on stage.
Video: Saunders' son attacks Monroe Jr.
Monroe Jr. has finally - and he's fuming
Monroe Jr. who was beaten by Gennady Golovkin in 2015, has responded to the incident by demanding compensation, and threatening to sue Saunders, promoter Frank Warren and the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBofC) if he doesn’t get it.
Monroe Jr. wrote: “If I’m not compensation something for being punched and kicked in the balls by Saunders’ son I’m gonna sue Frank Warren, the BBBofC and Saunders because I’ve been trying to not do face offs and get into any confrontation the whole time I’ve been here because I know Saunders wants to sabotage the fight… and Frank Warren kept insisting that we do we and look what happened.
“They said I didn’t wanna face off because I was scared - the only thing I was scared of is them trying to find a way to weasel out of the fight.
“I’m too close to winning to sit here and let them take it from me on some sneaky stuff.
“My team has gotten gypsy threats and racial slurs thrown at us for an entire week - that’s not something a fighter should have to deal with, especially in 2017.
“I will sue if something isn’t done about this and my team and lawyers fully have my back. So to Frank and Billy and to the BBBofC for allowing this to happen, we will have to hash this out one way or another.
“Had the shoe been on the other foot you guys would try to hang me out to dry.”
Monroe Jr. also posted a 14-minute video titled ‘Events earlier today’.
Monroe Jr. wants compensation but the feeling that will come should he beat Saunders at the Copper Box Arena tonight will be sweeter than any financial payout.