Billy Joe Saunders to make title defense against Martin Murray on Dec. 4

An all-British super middleweight title clash will take place on Dec. 4, when WBO titlist Billy Joe Saunders faces Martin Murray at the SSE Arena in Wembley.

This will be the second title defense for Saunders (29-0, 14 KOs) and his first fight in 2020.

"I am very happy to be defending my WBO world title again," Saunders said. "I haven't boxed for a year and I really do miss being in the ring. I can't wait to have my 30th professional fight and finish the year with a bang before a big 2021. The coronavirus pandemic has affected everybody in many ways, and it has had a big impact on the sport of boxing. The Canelo Alvarez fight falling through was very frustrating for me but now the journey continues in December."

A two-division champion, Saunders captured the WBO 168-pound title back in May 2019 by out-pointing Shefat Isufi over 12 rounds. He then stopped Marcelo Coceres in 11 rounds last November.

In Murray (39-5-1, 17 KOs), he's facing a hard-luck fighter who came excruciatingly close to winning the middleweight titles against Felix Sturm and then Sergio Martinez. After that, he suffered an 11th-round knockout loss to Gennadiy Golovkin and moved up to super middleweight.

"I'm really looking forward to getting back in there and fighting for another world title," said Murray. "The big fights definitely bring out the best in me. This year has been a good year for me personally. It seemed like all the stresses of life were taken away so I really enjoyed being able to relax a bit more and spend even more time with my family."

The two were previously scheduled to fight in 2018.

"Martin and I were supposed to fight twice before but it didn't happen either time,'' Saunders said. "He said some stuff and so did I -- so let's see who can back it up. I'm enjoying training with Mark Tibbs. He's incredibly knowledgeable in the sport of boxing and we are working on new stuff that we will show on the night."

Murray sees their rivalry a bit differently.

"There was no bad blood really between me and Billy to be honest, it was just a lot of frustration after he pulled out twice," he said. "That got left where it was, but we've definitely got some unfinished business. I'm expecting a hard fight and Billy Joe to be at his best, so I'll be ready."