Billy Joe Saunders is 'dejected' and struggling with the aftermath of his devastating loss to Canelo Alvarez earlier this month, according to head coach Mark Tibbs.
The former super middleweight champion hadn't tasted defeat in his pro career prior to the loss to pound-for-pound great Canelo, who broke his eye socket and cheek bones in such a way that Saunders required urgent surgery.
And Saunders is now dealing with the aftermath of being pulled out of the fight by his corner, which has caused him to receive some ridicule, particularly after notable critiques of Daniel Dubois after a similar injury rendered him unable to continue against Joe Joyce.
Speaking to Talksport after the result, trainer Tibbs noted that the Hertfordshire native is struggling with the aftermath of the fight, saying: “It’s going to be a very, very tough time emotionally for Billy Joe.
"He comes from the community he comes from and they are a very proud people and it is just going to be very tough.
"How he has to got to look at it as he went against a pound-for-pound great in Canelo Alvarez and he put up a good fight against him, he put up a good fight until he got his eye damaged with one punch, so that turned the fight around.
“He has a good family around him and good support with his friends, but it’s like grieving - it’s something he has got to get through,. He has got kids around him and that will help him get through and you have got to get on with things.
“He is dejected and after went on in the corner there, he was dejected and he was sitting there and I always step aside and let the doctor do his work."
Tibbs continued to detail their immediate discussions after the fight was stopped, and admitted that their contact has been stunted as time moves on.
"He was sitting there with the doctor," Tibbs added. "And I said to him, ‘Have you finished with him yet?’ That’s when I spoke to Billy. I said to Billy, ‘Get up and take that towel off your head and go and shake Canelo’s hand.’
"And he did that, just as I finished my line, he was gone. I told him while he was there to shake his trainer’s hand as well and he did that as well."
“I got a text from him and I have called him a couple of times, but one of his friends has texted me and filled me in on the situation which is that he wants to be with his friends right now and his family.”