By Duncan Wright, courtesy of The Daily Star
According to strong sources, Ricky Hatton is continuing to train for a boxing comeback – and he will make his return to the ring in November. Sources indicate Hatton will reportedly announce a two-fight comeback in the immediate future.
The Manchester ace has not fought since being knocked out by Manny Pacquiao in 2009 and has always insisted he had retired for good.
But the 33-year-old former two-weight world champion has been back in the gym, and sources say he is in his best shape since he was fighting.
Hatton's preference is to face his old rival Paulie Malignaggi in late November. However, Malignaggi is already scheduled for a fight on October 20th against Pablo Cesar Cano at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York - and that makes it very unlikely that a rematch would happen that quickly.
Malignaggi is desperate to avenge his defeat to Hatton back in 2008 when he felt he didn’t do himself justice in a light welterweight clash in Las Vegas in 2008.
The New Yorker is now WBA welterweight champion and would be willing to put that belt on the line because he feels he has unfinished business with Hatton.
Since retiring, Hatton was blighted by a cocaine addiction but has cleaned up his act and is gradually gaining a good reputation as a trainer and promoter.
But he has already lost 34lbs since returning to training and Starsport understands he has rediscovered his buzz for the fight game again.
Besides a plan to announce a two-fight return, he is keen to secure a new television deal to help his Hatton Promotions company promote the fight.
If he comes through well against Malignaggi, Hatton is still thought to harbor ambitions of a return with Pacquiao, who beat him inside two rounds three years ago.
Hatton has always felt problems in his training camp meant he didn’t give a proper account of himself in that fight.
And even at this stage a rematch would attract huge interest both in the States and the UK.