By Kevin Francis, courtesy of The Daily Star
RICKY HATTON has told the world’s best boxers to be on their guard, insisting: “I’m after your titles!”
‘The Hitman’ returns to the ring after a three-year absence on November 24 when he fights Ukrainian Vyacheslav Senchenko.
And Hatton wants the bout, in front of a sell-out 18,000 crowd at the Manchester Arena, to send out a message to the best in the business.
He said: “To the fighters out there holding the world title belts, my message is that I am after you because I want to get right back to the top.”
Two of Hatton’s targets will be former world light-welterweight champ Amir Khan and Kell Brook, who is in line to fight for the IBF world welterweight title. Either of those fights would be a real ‘Battle of Britain’ and both fighters have expressed interest in climbing into the ring with Hatton.
He said: “I am glad Amir and Kell have mentioned me because I am coming for them. On November 24 I will show what I have got left.
“I am not going to disrespect Kell or Amir by calling them out now – let’s just wait and see how my first fight back goes.
“Let me just prove to people what I can do. Kell and Amir are for the future. I just want to get into the ring for this fight and show what I can do.”
Former two-weight world champion Hatton, 34 next week, has not fought since his X-rated KO at the hands of Manny Pacquiao in 2009.
Now he faces Senchenko, who has lost just one of his 33 fights and is a former world champion who Hatton feels will give him a real test.
Hatton added: This is a statement of intent. I have gone the extra mile by taking this guy on. I could have taken an easy fight, but why?
“I want to get right back into the world title mix and you can’t do that by taking easy fights.
“I am in great shape and have even been surprising myself in the gym. I’ve been working really hard and my old buzz is back.
“I am a boxer who loves boxing and loves to box. I am driven by a hunger to box and can’t wait for the moment to arrive when I climb back into the ring again.”