Boxer Bradley Saunders thrilled to fight Ville Piispanen for vacant WBO Inter-continental title in Newcastle

THE KING BEATS THE PRINCE: Bradley Saunders (left) knocks down Mitch Princet at the Metro Radio Arena
THE KING BEATS THE PRINCE: Bradley Saunders (left) knocks down Mitch Princet at the Metro Radio Arena

BRADLEY Saunders is to fight for the WBO Intercontinental light-welterweight title in Newcastle in June.

The undefeated prospect, from Sedgefield, will take on Finland’s Ville Piispanen for the vacant belt on June 7 at Metro Radio Arena.

Saunders v Piispanen will be one of the chief support bouts to Stuart Hall’s second defence of his IBF world bantamweight crown against fellow Englishman Paul Butler.

It is a huge step forward for Saunders.

He had been due to fight world-rated Paul McCloskey on the last Metro Radio Arena show when Hall defended his title against Hartlepool star Martin Ward, only for the Northern Ireland southpaw to pull out injured.

Instead the 27-year-old demolished Mitch Prince in just four rounds in a one-sided England v Scotland battle – his ninth straight win (seven coming inside the distance)

Saunders v Piispanen is on and it’s a great opportunity for the former Gus Robinson Developments boxer to gain a place in the WBO’s top echelons.

“If we do the job like I have been, I will be in the top 10 in WBO world rankngs,” he said.

“It’s a huge fight for myself and appreciate all the support am getting.”

Piispanen from Lahti, has a good record of 18 wins (six inside the distance with four defeats and three draws.

The 30-year-old is a former EU light-welterweight champ and made an unsuccessful bid for the European title last December in Italy.