MICHAEL KATSIDIS 28-4 (23 KO’s) believes that Ricky Burns 32-2 (9) is the most dangerous opponent he could have faced when he meets the Scot in two weeks time at Wembley Arena for the interim WBO lightweight title.
Katsidis who has been named the ‘Brit Basher’ by some has already defeated Graham Earl and Kevin Mitchell on British soil and will be aiming to add a third scalp to the list.
Burns has moved up to lightweight for the bout having relinquished his WBO World Super-Featherweight title, the belt he won last summer against Roman Martinez.
Katsidis, who will be making his second appearance at London’s Wembley Arena on November 5 LIVE on BoxNation (Sky Platform Ch. 456), is wary of the threat his Glaswegian rival poses, “He is very dangerous, the most dangerous opponent I could have faced.”
The 31-year-old defeated Mitchell last May at Upton Park via a third round knockout and the Australian feels that Burns will provide a harder test, “Burns has better boxing ability than both Kevin Mitchell and Graham Earl. Earl has the biggest heart out of them while Mitchell is a little inconsistent. Burns will be the best I have faced in the UK.
Burns is powerful and is a very consistent fighter. He has showed it in the past. It will be tough like I said he is more consistent that Mitchell and he is a better boxer than Earl, if we are to compare him with the English lads.”
Katsidis knows what it is like to move from different weight divisions as he recently returned to lightweight and feels that the change will have no affect on his Scottish counterpart, “I don’t think Burns will be at a disadvantage moving up a weight. I think it’s a move he should have made a long time ago. Some underestimate his power but not me.”
‘The Great’ believes there is no favourite going into the world title clash in a fortnight and feels that he and Burns are on par that will make for an interesting fight, “I do not feel I am the favourite for this fight or that I have the edge. I feel we are on par. I may be experienced at the top level but Burns has an awful a lot of experience too. He showed that last year when he won his title.”
Katsidis last fought back August when he defeated Michael Lozada inside three rounds. The fight was the perfect comeback after the Queensland-born boxer had lost out to Robert Guerrero on a points decision in April, a fight he revealed he was not mentally prepared for, “I was in great condition physically for that fight but mentally I wasn’t there. I only took the fight because I was relying on knocking him out. It obviously didn’t come off that way. He was lucky to get away with it. It is all in the past now.”
Before the match-up was confirmed with Burns, Katsidis had been linked with a potential rematch with Mitchell. The Londoner made a victorious comeback in July against Manchester-fighter John Murray and Katsidis revealed he would relish the opportunity, “Anything is possible. I’d love to because I love fighting in England. I wouldn’t say no to the opportunity. At this moment in time I am not looking past this fight though.”
Katsidis was received well by the east London fans after that win last May and the Aussie has spoken of his desire to live in England one day, “I love England. I want to live there. It is a fantastic place and some where I always want to fight. Hopefully I can be based there soon. The West Ham fans when I faced Mitchell showed why the country is so great. They appreciated me, they appreciate warriors.”