Billy Joe Saunders Vacates WBO Middleweight Crown

Billy Joe Saunders to give up WBO title to challenge licence decision

Billy Joe Saunders to give up WBO title to challenge licence decision

Billy Joe Saunders will challenge the decision by the Massachusetts State Athletic Commission (MSAC) to refuse him a license after giving up his WBO middleweight title due to the "mental anguish" caused by the case. As soon as Saunders' failed Voluntary Anti-Doping Association urine test from August 30 came to light on September 26, Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn, who represents Andrade, made a deal with Kautondokwa to be on standby if Saunders couldn't fight.

"The Massachusetts State Athletic Commission, whose jurisdiction the fight takes place under, at their hearing yesterday they had said they had grounds for denial of his application for a license", Warren said.

Francisco "Paco" Valcarcel, the WBO's president, told BoxingScene.com of Saunders' decision Thursday and confirmed that the WBO's 160-pound title is now vacant. It is now highly likely that the WBO will strip the 29-year-old of the title.

Billy Joe Saunders underwent testing by both WADA and VADA.

Dan Rafael of ESPN reported first that a source with intimate knowledge of the situation had let them know that Saunders had tested positive for the banned substance oxilofrine. WADA, as mandated by the British Boxing Board of Control and, voluntarily, VADA at the request of the Promoter, not the MSAC. However, VADA banned the substance at all times.

"But the test was done by VADA, the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association". The substance they found in their test is prohibited by them, but under WADA it is allowed out of competition, which is up until the day before the fight. "Further, the MSAC refused to properly consider submissions from Billy Joe's representative despite him being present at the hearing".

"From a business perspective I see where they are at, but it's not fair on Billy Joe Saunders that he has defended his title three or four times and he's in this position". Saunders, who attended the commission meeting via telephone and cursed at the commissioners following the ruling, was scheduled to make his fourth defense against mandatory challenger Demetrius Andrade on October 20 at TD Garden in Boston.

When Kautondokwa got the call about possibly taking on Andrade, he had already been training even though a fight wasn't on the horizon. They are recognised by the WBC, WBA, IBF and WBO and are the body that carry out Anti-Doping in the United Kingdom and manage the same exclusively for the British Boxing Board of Control.