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Hatton: I'll Be More Than a Match For Saul Alvarez

Matthew Hatton has brushed aside controversy surrounding his surprise world title shot.

Hatton, the European welterweight champion and younger brother of former light-welterweight ruler Ricky, will face highly-rated Mexican youngster Saul Alvarez for the vacant WBC light-middleweight championship in California on March 5.

The WBC stripped the title from Filipino legend Manny Pacquiao, who will campaign at welterweight in his forthcoming super-fight against Shane Mosley, and last week sanctioned the Alvarez-Hatton bout to decide its new champion.

As when Pacquiao demolished Antonio Margarito over 12 rounds to claim the belt last November, the bout will take place at a catchweight of 150lb, 4lb below the light-middleweight limit.

That, along with the fact that both Hatton and Alvarez have campaigned for the majority of their careers at welterweight, has led many to question the legitimacy of the contest.

David Coldwell, trainer of the WBC's number-four-ranked light-middleweight Ryan Rhodes, has called the situation "boxing politics at its worst".

Hatton, 29, is understandably unperturbed by concerns emanating from the Sheffield fighter's camp.

"I've not been getting involved in all that and let's be clear, I took the fight before it was a world title fight because it's a great opportunity," Hatton said.

"I was prepared to take on Alvarez at a catchweight of 150lb, so I think my bravery in taking a fight like this at a weight up has been rewarded."

Pacquiao's wins over Miguel Cotto and Margarito, along with Floyd Mayweather's return to boxing against Juan Manuel Marquez in November 2009, have brought catchweight contests - those from outside the familiar weight classes - to prominence in boxing.

Opinion is divided on their impact upon the sport, but Hatton is comfortable with the concept.

The Mancunian added: "The weight has got to suit both fighters and if it's a fight that people want to see - and people do want to see this fight - I don't see a problem in fights taking place at catchweight."

In the bout itself, Hatton is expected to have his work cut out against the prodigiously talented Alvarez.

One of the rising stars of the sport, 20-year-old Alvarez is undefeated in 36 contests since turning professional at 15 and boasts 26 knockouts.

"You can't knock him really. From what I've seen of him he's an excellent young fighter," said Hatton, who is unbeaten in his last nine fights.

"He's a good all-rounder - he can fight, he can box, he's obviously got a lot of power.

"He's a strong guy but like any other fighter he's got weaknesses.

"I'm a seasoned fighter. I feel as if physically and mentally I'm coming into my peak and producing the best form of my career.

"At this moment in our careers I feel I'll be more than a match for him."

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by budfr on 02-23-2011

Alvarez does not have an amateur career and he´s 20!!! Cotto fought a bum by the name of Foreman and now he´s fighting Mayorga!!!!! Hatton is European champion. Europe is in the map, idiots. It will be a good fight,…

Comment by UglyPug on 02-22-2011

ah ok this is for a belt at 154, i take back my previous comments in defense (somewhat) of this fight. hatton had legitimately earned a title shot at 147, he's done all the proper steps, but he isn't good…

Comment by Pullcounter on 02-22-2011

[QUOTE=BIGPOPPAPUMP;10143276]Matthew Hatton has brushed aside controversy surrounding his surprise world title shot. [[URL=http://www.boxingscene.com/?m=show&id=36269]Click Here To Read More[/URL]][/QUOTE] [IMG]http://ia.media-imdb.com/images/M/MV5BNjY4MTAyODk2M15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMTc4MzM0Mw@@._V1._SX348_SY481_.jpg[/IMG] [FONT="Arial Black"][SIZE="5"][COLOR="Red"]Ginger on Ginger, Till charon arrives![/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]

Comment by al22tec on 02-22-2011

WBC= World Boxing Catchweight

Comment by Evil Abed on 02-22-2011

I got Saul KOing Hatton in less than 6 rounds. Hatton is far less durable than N'dou and old Baldo. Plus Hatton is fighting at a weight that might slow him down. Canelo is fighting at weight hes naturally growing…

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