Grieving Billy Joe Sanders led Martin Marie to retire with another defense of his WBO Super-Middleweight title.
The 31-year-old champ lost his uncle Tom Benny to a collision at the All English Wembley Arena and had his name emblazoned on his kit.
He was proud of the 30th win of his career – showing moments of supreme skill and artificial heart – to see the 38-year-old Warhorse, who now has five failed World Title Bids on his impressive CV.
The south side St. Helens was very fresh, sticky and perfect for the tough guy but not strong enough to stop the venerable elders.
The three judges saw a masterclass from Sanders, scoring 120-109, 120-109 and 118-110 and he can now go back to the career-determining battle with Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin.
He said: “I was out for a year and it was like boxing in the cemetery because I like to box for the crowd.
“I tried to set a rhythm but he’s a clever old fox so I can’t pronounce people’s names in this performance.”
With both men tied and stabbed with their jobs in the opener, the right left hand of Marr’s body was probably the best goal from Saunders. Murray landed his right hand on the second side but it only fell on the Hatfields man’s chest.
Sanders threw more combinations into his fluorescent yellow gloves but the experienced watchman was tall and tight and most of them were caught. In the third it was clear that Murray wanted to break Sanders ‘body, especially outside of Sanders’ right-wing jaw.
Sanders, however, climbed to the top twice and a few of his fans clapped in the dark of the courtyard.
Murray was fourth, he certainly got injured after two ODIs, but referee Phil Edwards called it a slip. Sanders was sliding gears and slashing at Murray’s defense with a laser-like blow.
Saunders has not been able to enjoy a high-level opponent or performance since he gave bamboo to David Lemiaux in 2013, but he has not been able to pull off a piece of the ring fight.
It was becoming positively one-sided in the fifth when Marr’s big heart and stiff chin only kept him in it.
Both fighting Britons were warned to speak of head lip and trash in the sixth, and when the head of the seventh jute Saunders was returned, Murray was found alive with the help of a Wright hook counter and a jab.
Trainer Mark Tibbes told Sanders to leave the tenth after some deadly collisions and clutches but he reached a brilliant combination of body with head.
Sanders spent three years without elite opponents and performances, but Moore’s resilience provided the perfect platform to show off his fists and movements.
Proud Traveler won the fight with a piston-like job and screw-shot big hand with each card on one or two backs.
Gutt Murray admits he lost to a good guy and refuses to confirm his retirement as the family waits for racing.
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