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Middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders heads a line-up of local talent when he defends British and Commonwealth belts against Matthew Hall on Thursday, March 21, at the York Hall, Bethnal Green.

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Saunders enjoyed a very successful 2012, picking up the Commonwealth crown with a stunning first-round win over Tony Hill, and making defences against Bradley Pryce and Jarrod Fletcher, before ending the year with a points win over Nick Blackwell to land the British title.

This year is set to be a big one for the unbeaten 23-year-old, based at Canning Town’s TKO Gym, when he is looking to make the Lonsdale belt his own and target the European title, before moving to a world title shot.

Saunders is looking forward to the test and predicts a battle against his Manchester rival.

He said: “Hall derailed Scot Kris Carslaw, who was unbeaten, and he will be looking to do the same to me, which puts pressure on me. Bbut pressure makes me perform better and better.”

Tony Conquest’s rematch with WBO International cruiserweight champion Neil Dawson, which was originally scheduled to take place at Wembley Arena on March 16, will now be staged on the York Hall show.

Conquest is aiming to avenge a shock first-round loss to big-hitting Dawson in December.

Also featuring on the undercard are former local amateurs, including the unbeaten Canning Town light-weight talent Billy Morgan, super-flyweight prospect Charlie Hoy, middleweight Tom Baker and super-middleweight John Dignum.

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