King of Herts: Billy Joe Saunders wins his second world title with unanimous decision over Isufi

PUBLISHED: 23:58 18 May 2019 | UPDATED: 23:58 18 May 2019

Action from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOO

Action from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2019 Archant

The now trademark 'where did it go' taunt arrived as early as the third round and bar one huge scare it was almost plain sailing for Billy Joe Saunders who became a two-weight world champion with victory over Shefat Isufi.

Action from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOOAction from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOO

Mind it was a hell of a scare, a punch in the early stages of round six sending the Hatfield fighter sprawling backwards into the ropes and spending the next two minutes desperately avoiding his Albanian opponent.

Action from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOOAction from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOO

But it removed the cockiness that had been evident early on and helped Saunders become the WBO world super-middleweight champion.

Action from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOOAction from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOO

He did it with an unanimous decision from the three judges, including one who said he would every round, even round six, while the other two went much closer to the truth with 118-110 and 117-111.

Action from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOOAction from the vacant WBO world super-middleweight championship fight between Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi at the King Of Herts show in Stevenage. Picture: DANNY LOO

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The big crowd inside Stevenage's Lamex Stadium had loved the early stages but it was a muted finish as the result became obvious from a long way out.

Those early exchanges had Saunders at his elusive best and when he got in range he found gaps through Isufi's solid defence.

The speed of the 29-year-old got him out of range of any more of the Germany-based Isufi's bombs, although a few whistled a little too close for comfort.

But, although you always felt Isufi could make lightning strike twice, Saunders will now be looking to the future.

Frank Warren says people are avoiding him but as a two-weight world champion he may well tempt one or two into the ring.

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