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Dublin: 13 °C Sunday 5 July, 2020

The Andy Lee-Billy Joe Saunders title fight could take place on hurling final weekend

Keep Saturday 5 September free, just in case.

Andy lee salutes the crowd Lee's last fight, against Peter 'Kid Chocolate' Quillin in April, ended in a draw. Source: Ed Mulholland/INPHO

ANDY LEE’S WORLD title defence against Billy Joe Saunders has been provisionally pencilled in for 5 September — the night before the All-Ireland hurling final.

Saunders’ promoter Frank Warren pointed to the first Saturday in September as the ‘likely’ date for a showdown between the WBO middleweight champion and his mandatory challenger.

Undefeated Saunders (21-0) is due to return to the ring on 24 July when he fights at the SSE Arena in Wembley.

“I’ll be brushing off a few cobwebs before the big one in September against Andy Lee,” the bullish Englishman said on Monday.

Writing on Twitter, Lee’s coach Adam Booth indicated that nothing had been officially confirmed yet.

Both camps are still in discussions over a venue with Lee’s team anxious to host the fight in Thomond Park, while Saunders is lobbying for it to take place in London.

The fight is set to be Lee’s (34-2-1) first defence of the WBO strap he won against the Russian Matt Korobov in December 2014.

He was due to defend his title against Peter ‘Kid Chocolate’ Quillin in New York in April, but Qullin failed to make weight before the non-title fight which ended in a draw.

Originally published at 14.32

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Niall Kelly

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