Advertisement
Advertisement

Photos: Ricky Burns Becomes a Player at Lightweight

By Jake Donovan, photos by Alan 'Big Al' Stevenson

Ricky Burns’ decision to abandon his super featherweight belt – and with that, a date on HBO – proved to be a wise gamble.

The Scot immediately made his presence felt in the lightweight division on the strength of his upset win over Michael Katsidis in their 12-round main event at Wembley Arena on Saturday night in London, England.

Both fighters weighed in at the lightweight limit of 135 lb. for their highly anticipated showdown, which aired live on UK’s Boxnation.

Burns wisely came out boxing, shooting his jab and using his height and reach advantages to his benefit. Katsidis found a way inside early on and was able score with right hands upstairs, but was less effective once Burns was able to reestablish distance between the two.

Katsidis closed the gap considerably in the second round, scoring on the inside with left hooks and uppercuts. Burns absorbed well, and by the third round was once again able to stick and move. Katsidis ate a few right hands that had his head snapping back before firing back in return, but Burns was able to counter with left hooks to the body.

More of the same threatened to transpire in the fourth, until Katsidis was able to pin down Burns and wail away at his rail thin frame. Burns took it well and returned fire, but was outgunned for the first time in the fight.

Burns’ corner was displeased with the threat of momentum shifting, demanding their fighter shoot his jab over Katsidis’ guard to prevent the Aussie from getting off his punches. The strategy worked to a degree, but the disparity in power was telling as Katsidis continued to charge forward.

The middle rounds saw both fighters trade away, with Burns surprisingly holding his own every step of the way. Katsidis was the busier of the two, and also managed to constantly corner Burns, who would instinctively cover up and stop punching whenever under fire.

Catching an earful in between rounds, Burns came out in the ninth returning to what worked best. Katsidis was unable to adjust for the first time in several rounds, but fixed that problem in the 10th as Burns spent most of the frame in retreat and on the defensive.

As was the case throughout the fight, Burns managed to recover every time the fight threatened to get away from him. The lanky Scot bounced back well to box his way to a clear cut 11th round, which ultimately proved to be the difference on the cards.

Katsidis came out for the 12th and final round fighting like a man who knew he needed a knockout to win. The two-time lineal title challenger unloaded with non-stop punching, but was a bit overzealous in his attack as referee Phil Edwards twice warned him for rabbit punching.

Another flurry had Burns in trouble, but he punched his way out just enough to cause a break in the action, prompting a time out to have a large strand of loose tape clipped from his glove. Katsidis never fully regained momentum after that, still doing more than enough to win the round, but was far too behind at that point.

All that was left was for the scorecards to be read. The final tallies were way too wide, but had the right guy winning as far as the UK crowd was concerned.  Scores of 117-111 (2x) and 117-112 sent the live patrons into a frenzy, as Burns picks up a belt in a second weight class.

It’s not (yet) a full-fledged title, as Burns now awaits the outcome of lineal lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez’ third fight with Manny Pacquiao next weekend, as well as what Marquez decides to do afterward. In the meantime, he gets to spend the rest of the year reflecting in perhaps the biggest win of his career as he improves to 33-2 (9KO).

The bout extends his winning streak to 18 straight, dating back to 2007. Despite his lack of true knockout power, the supremely conditioned Burns continues to find ways to win, as evidenced in his off-the-canvas upset win over previously unbeaten Rocky Martinez.

Katsidis’ career heads in the exact opposite direction as his status as a top contender is now officially in trouble.

The all-action lightweight has proven himself at the best-of-the-rest level, but his struggles continue at the championship level. He loses for the third time in his last four bouts as he falls to 28-4 (23KO). The loss is also his first on UK soil, having previously knocked out Kevin Mitchell and Graham Earl.

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter at twitter.com/JakeNDaBox or submit questions/comments to [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by lest26 on 11-07-2011

yeah he is definetly a contender, he looked great against Kats, he looked real strong, could even do well at LW he is getting better with time, bit gutted Kats lost the way he did he didnt seem quite as…

Comment by Steward on 11-06-2011

I can't get get over he went 12 rounds with Katsidis and looks pretty flawless. Great and well-earned win. I think he should pursue Barrera or someone else with a name. I can't believe he's the same fighter i saw…

Comment by onechance87 on 11-06-2011

[QUOTE=uglypug;11381773]me and ricky burns are very similar. . . we are built basically identical. . . im a little bigger than him, and I have "soccer legs", but we both have the sinewy upper bodies and wide backs and long…

Comment by UglyPug on 11-06-2011

me and ricky burns are very similar. . . we are built basically identical. . . im a little bigger than him, and I have "soccer legs", but we both have the sinewy upper bodies and wide backs and long…

Comment by SCtrojansbaby on 11-06-2011

I would love to see him fight Kevin Mitchell

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (5)
Top Headlines Thurman-Porter Final Ratings: 3.1 Million Viewers, Highest of '16 Erkan Teper, Despite Suspension, Returns To Face Rossy Deontay Wilder, Chris Arreola Take Part in VADA Testing Jarrell Miller vs. Fred Kassi on August 19th, Showtime Ogogo To Eubank Jr: After Golovkin Bashes You Up - I'll Be Ready! Sergio Martinez: Canelo Made Smart Business Move With GGG Nick Blackwell Blown Away By David Haye's Generous Donation Miguel Marriaga vs. Guy Robb WBO Eliminator on August 27th DiBella Thinks Female Pro Boxing Hits Major U.S. TV in 2016 Porter Plots Fall Return, Wants Immediate Thurman Rematch Hearn: Amir Khan Will NEVER Be The Same, NEVER Face Brook Whyte: Don't Be Shocked if Shannon Briggs Drills David Haye Wilder vs. Joshua Will Be Built Up as SHO PPV, Says Hearn Danny Garcia Hits Back at Keith Thurman With Sneaky Reply Haskins vs. Hall is Likely For Brook-Vargas or Golovkin-Eubank Koncz: If Pacquiao Returns, Crawford Not a Thought - Never Was! Mikey Garcia Names Terry Flanagan as Potential Target at 135 Froch Thinks Golovkin Will Struggle With Ramirez, 168 Power Arum: Manny Pacquiao Wants To Fight Again, Not Sure He Can Yet Klitschko Manager Wants Full Investigation on Fury Doping Claim Roman Gonzalez, Carlos Cuadras Trade Heated Words Oscar Valdez Ready For The Danger of Hard Punching Rueda Ryan Martin To Make Ring Return on Wilder vs. Arreola Card Povetkin Holds Meeting With WBC: Awaits Decision on Wilder Golovkin, Eubank Jr. Should Sign By This Weekend, Says Hearn SHO's Espinoza: Canelo-GGG in "Fall 2017" Was To Stop Bleeding Photos: Mario Barrios Putting in Work For World Title Eliminator Roman Gonzalez Focused on Cuadras Next, For The Right Price Parker's Promoter: Anthony Joshua Will Eat The Jab All Night! Cecilia Braekhus Returns, Tops First Card in Norway Since 1980 Manuel Avila Continues Unbeaten Run at Cache Creek Casino Smith's Trainer: We Can Beat Canelo, But Will The Judges Agree? News: Boxeo Telemundo Update; Skeete-Lepelley; Jay Harris Thurman Might Make Mandatory Defense Against Avanesyan Next Jonathan Guzman Ready For Wake Title Shot Rabchenko Handed IBF Eliminator On Santa Cruz-Frampton Card Hurd Wants Foes Like Bundrage, Ishe Smith For Upcoming Fights DiBella: Wilder vs. Joshua is Inevitable in Future, But Not Now Canelo Alvarez vs. Liam Smith is NOT a Bad Fight, Explains Hearn Haye: Bellew Fight Must Be at Heavyweight, He Must Add Weight
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement