By Phil D. Jay
Former interim WBO lightweight title challenger Kevin Mitchell has admitted defeat in his efforts to fight full champion Ricky Burns on July 14th at his beloved West Ham United’s Boleyn Ground.
The 27 year-old, who has fought just twice in the two years since losing to Michael Katsidis at the same venue, was hoping to erase the memory of his solitary defeat to the Aussie and saw the Scot as a perfect opportunity to become a world title holder.
“I’ve been in the gym training for two months for this fight but it seems he just doesn’t want to defend the title against me at Upton Park,” Mitchell told London24.com.
“I will give him until September to agree to fight me. I’ll even go up to Scotland and beat him before his own fans, but if it is not signed I’ll look for another world title fight.”
Burns, 29, got married in the summer, one of a number of stumbling blocks in negotiations and looks likely to defend his belt in the autumn in his native Scotland, with Mitchell still one of the names in the frame.
The controversial fight between David Haye and Dereck Chisora tops the bill at Upton Park next month and whether Mitchell can be handed a six or eight-round slot on the card is now doubtful with the timescale involved.
Phil D. Jay covers boxing for worldboxingnews.net