Billy Joe Saunders and Chris Eubank Jr to fight on same card in May
British middleweight rivals Billy Joe Saunders (21-0, 11 KOs) and Chris Eubank Jr (19-1, 14 KOs) will fight on the same card on May 9 at Wembley Arena, as a lucrative rematch between the pair builds up.
While Eubank takes on Australian Les Sherrington (35-7, 19 KOs), Saunders will also appear against an opponent to be announced.
Saunders defeated Eubank by a split decision in November to retain his British, Commonwealth and European titles, and in addition put himself in a mandatory position to challenge for the WBO world title and waits to face the winner of the April 11 clash between champion Andy Lee and Peter Quillin.
Eubank rebounded by stopping Dimitry Chudinov in February to win the interim WBA middleweight title.
Saunders and Eubank met at a press conference on Thursday to announce the card and the verbals soon started.
Saunders said: "I will smash Chris Eubank Jr. to bits if we meet again. He narrowly escaped last time, but I've got his number this time. I would absolutely destroy him if we met again. I'd love the chance to do it, but first I'm going to fight at the SSE Wembley Arena, win that fight, and then I've got the winner out of Lee and Quillin next for the WBO world title.
"Then I'll see what Eubank Jr. has been up to and if he's worthy of a shot at the world title. I did say I'd give him a rematch, but it will be completely on my terms. I've shut him up once and embarrassed him in front of the British public. Next time I'll knock him out and leave him desperate. First thing for me is to get back in the ring and show that I'm ready to fight Lee or Quillin. I want that world title next, so whoever I face on May 9 is in for a lot of pain."
Eubank responded by saying: "I'll fight Average Joe anytime, anywhere, but he has to realize that I actually hold the WBA interim world title belt so that puts me above him, regardless of his close points decision over me. The judges believed that he won last time and that's how they scored it, but look at how he did it. He chose to run and steal the rounds rather than stand and fight. I challenge him next time to stand toe to toe and fight, and let's see how he fares in the center of the ring rather than running around it.
"I am the champion now, and I will look at him after I've defended my title against Sherrington, who I will not be overlooking. I will do my research on him and a plan to defeat him. Chudinov was dismantled from the opening round, and I will do the same to Sherrington."