Boxing


Hatton Wants Pacquiao Next, Is Worried Mayweather Junior Will Beat Him To It

Ricky Hattonby James Slater - It seems just about every fighter currently operating anywhere from between the 135 to the 147-pound mark wants a piece of pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao. Lightweight rival from a great two fight series, Juan Manuel Marquez wants very much to meet "Pac-Man" in a third and deciding fight, light-welterweight champ Ricky Hatton is craving a clash with the legendary Filipino, and even big welterweights like Antonio Margarito have expressed an interest in facing Manny. This is all down to the 29-year-old southpaw's stunning stoppage win over Oscar De La Hoya a week ago - quite simply, Manny is now the #1 star in the sport.

So who will he fight next? Pacquiao is widely expected to drop back down in weight, as 147 is not in any way his natural poundage. The 140-pound weight class, that at the moment sees Ricky Hatton as the top dog, is where Pacquiao's next bout will likely take place - and "The Hitman" sure hopes it will be against him. However, one fighter this article has not yet mentioned has also got people talking about a fight between he and Pacquiao - Floyd Mayweather Junior. "Money," who was the pound-for-pound best before retiring, is a man many people would absolutely love to see come back and face Manny - either at 140, at 147, or at a catch-weight somewhere in between. But Ricky Hatton is not one of them, at least not yet.

The 30-year-old Manchester warrior wants nothing more than to be next in line for "Pac-Man," but he is somewhat concerned the only man to have ever beaten him will jump the queue and land the Pacquiao super-fight first.

Speaking in today's Sun newspaper, Hatton expressed his concerns.

"Now he's beaten Oscar De La Hoya, I'd love Manny Pacquiao to come down and fight me," Hatton said. "He's the best in the world right now and I'm unbelievably confident a showdown can be arranged. I'm not surprised Floyd is considering a return - but I'd be disappointed if he got in ahead of me. I've put the hard work in and would like to get the chance to take on Manny.

"If I win that fight, then I could strike a deal for a rematch with Mayweather. But that's some way down the line."

Whoever Pacquiao chooses to fight next - be it Hatton or Mayweather, as it will surely be one of the two - it will be one red-hot ticket. Exciting times are ahead of us in the lower weight classes, and the dynamo from General Santos City in The Philippines is the overwhelming reason.

"Pac-Man" has the right to call the shots and it's his choice. Who should he pick; Mayweather or Hatton?

Article posted on 13.12.2008



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