Jarrod Fletcher
Jarrod Fletcher

Fletcher and Saunders to clash

QUEENSLAND'S Australian middleweight boxing champion Jarrod Fletcher has won all 12 of his bouts since turning professional after the Beijing Olympics.

Billy Joe Saunders joined the professional ranks at the same time after representing England in Beijing. He has proved to be just as impressive, winning all 13 of his bouts - nine by KO.

Now the talented pair are on a collision course for a showdown in London.

The 22-year-old Saunders won the Commonwealth (British Empire) middleweight title after taking just 30 seconds to stop Tony Hill at the Royal Albert Hall last month.

Now Fletcher's trainer Steve Deller is negotiating with Saunders' manager Frank Warren to stage the fight at either the Royal Albert Hall or Wembley Stadium later this year.

Fletcher, who easily defended his Australian belt for the first time by beating Gold Coast-based Les Piper on a unanimous points decision in Melbourne last month, is no stranger to standing toe-to-toe with the best of British.

He beat the current European super-middleweight champion, England's James DeGale, on his way to winning Commonwealth Games gold in Melbourne in 2006.

While Fletcher is licking his lips at the prospect of taking on 'Caravan Kid' Saunders, the great-grandson of one of Britain's most famous Romany (Travellers) bareknuckle champions, Absolom Beeney, he said it was business as usual until everything was set in stone.

"To get the chance to fight Frank Warren's boy and do it in his own backyard is a massive opportunity for me to show the world what I can do," the Brisbane-based Fletcher said.

"It will be tough but I am ready for it - I just have to wait to get the green light now."