Date: 9th June 2017 at 7:22am
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News broke yesterday Billy Joe Saunders WBO middleweight defence, on July 8th in London, against Avtandil Khurtsidze had been cancelled.

It seems that the Russian challenger has been arrested for alleged links to organised crime.

The arrest took place in New York where Khurtsidze was amongst thirty-three members of a Russian crime syndicate were detained.

Khurtsidze?s promoter, Lou DiBella, has confirmed that the challenger will be unable to travel to the UK.

A statement issued by the acting Manhattan US Attorney, Joon H Kim, reads,

‘The dizzying array of criminal schemes committed by this organised crime syndicate allegedly include a murder-for-hire conspiracy, a plot to rob victims by seducing and drugging them with chloroform, the theft of cargo shipments containing over 10,000 pounds of chocolate, and a fraud on casino slot machines using electronic hacking devices.’

For Saunders and his supporters it is a bitter blow, however, our immediate thoughts relate to the fact that why wasn?t any attempt made to find a replacement just to, how they say, keep the show on the road?