Boxing


Ricky Hatton Says He Is Not Even Thinking About A Fight With Amir Khan

by James Slater - After Amir Khan's sensational and impressive points win over Andreas Kotelenik at the weekend there was much talk at the post-fight press conference about the new WBA 140-pound champion making a defence down the road against fellow Brit, Ricky Hatton. Khan himself was somewhat interested in the fight, as was his trainer Freddie Roach. Promoter Frank Warren was dead against it, claiming the fight would be nothing more than a risk to Hatton's health. But what does the man himself think about the prospective UK super-fight?

Now out of hospital (Hatton was hospitalised due to a reported stomach bug), Ricky has been speaking to his local newspaper, The Manchester Evening News. And guess what, he's not in the slightest bit interested in a fight with Khan, nor has he even thought about fighting again at all..

"I'm not thinking about boxing at the moment," Ricky told the paper. "Maybe I'll wake up one day and think 'let's give it another go,' but I might not. I'm not missing it. Fighting is the furthest thing from my mind.

"I'm delighted for Amir. I can't praise him enough. He's gone back to the drawing board and answered any questions there might have been about him. But the fact that he's won a world title has not made me any closer to a comeback. It hasn't entered my head. I don't think I have to beat Amir Khan to prove anything."

So there it is, Hatton, now over two months on from his brutal KO loss to Manny Pacquiao, has yet to decide if he'll ever fight again, against anyone, let alone Khan.

Indeed, what Hatton said next to the newspaper gave the strongest indication yet that he might well be content with what he's achieved in the ring and be ready to walk away.

"When I look back at my career nobody expected me to do what I've done," the 30-year-old said. "I won five titles at two different weights. I've only lost to the pound-for-pound best fighters in the world. If I don't fight again I can hold me head high.

"Maybe somewhere down the line I might think about giving it another go and if he's [Khan] still world champion then obviously he would be a possibility."

Ricky is right when he says he can hold his head up high if he fights again or not. He is also correct when he says he does not have to prove anything by beating Khan. The only thing, to my mind, that could tempt him to fight again is the desire to go out a winner, as opposed to going out the way he did against Pacquiao.

However, of all the interviews Hatton has given since May 2nd, this latest one most makes it sound as though "The Hitman" has done all the fighting he's going to do. Inevitably, though, rumours will continue to pop up regarding one comeback fight or another.

Amir Khan will have to make the first defence his WBA crown against someone else, something that will please his promoter at least.

Article posted on 21.07.2009



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