By Nick Parkinson, courtesy of The Daily Star
JUNIOR WITTER has warned old rival Ricky Hatton he faces a toe-to-toe battle that could see him KO’d on his November 24 comeback.
Bradford veteran Witter goaded Hatton for years in the hope the Manchester boxer would meet him in a showdown many fight fans were desperate to see.
But despite both holding versions of the world light-welterweight title at the same time, the fight never happened.
Witter, 38, does not think ‘The Hitman’ will ever fight him, despite Hatton ending over three years in retirement to face Ukrainian Vyacheslav Senchenko at the Manchester Arena next month.
Witter, who defends his British welterweight title against Frankie Gavin on Thursday, claims Hatton is scared to face him and has underestimated the danger former world welterweight champ Senchenko poses.
Witter, who Hatton once dubbed the ‘Mr Bean of Boxing’, said: “Ricky’s comeback is good in the respect that it has got him in shape after being obese.
“Boxing-wise, it’s good because it brings people back to the game. If he is to achieve anything is another story, we have to wait and see. He’s got a tough enough fight in his comeback and I think they’ve underestimated his opponent.
“Style-wise, it’s going to be a great fight and it’s going to be a slug-fest, so I will wait to see what happens when he gets hit again.
“Ricky never wanted it before so why is he going to want it now? He’s scared of me, he doesn’t want the fight, there’s nothing else to it.
“It’s not about money because there’s plenty of money, everybody wants to see it. It’s a massive fight right now, but no, I don’t expect it to happen. It’s all on him.”
Unbeaten Gavin, 27, can transform his career which looked wrecked after he pulled out on the eve of a fight a year ago.
The Birmingham boxer claims problems in his personal life are now resolved and his boxing has benefited from a move back to his home city.
He said: “I’m in a much better place now. My mum, Mary, had cancer and I had a lot of personal problems with my girlfriend.
“I let it get in the way of my boxing career.
“I wasn’t in the right frame of mind to box and pulled out of a fight but that’s all in the past. My mum’s healed and I’ve just been waiting for a title shot.
“Going back home has made me the person that I was when I was an amateur.
“I feel twice the fighter I was six months ago.”