By Edward Chaykovsky
Promoter Eddie Hearn is pleading with former world champion Ricky Burns to drop down in level and face domestic opponents - and then move up in class to the world level after a few return victories. Burns struggled in his last three fights, fall behind and needing a later rally against Jose Gonzalez, suffering a broken jaw and going to a draw with Ray Beltran and losing a lopsided decision and the WBO lightweight crown to Terence Crawford.
Hearn told Daily Record: “He has had a really tough run of fights and sometimes performance is based on belief and confidence. It’s very difficult for him to have that belief after his last three performances. Forget the Beltran fight because he broke his jaw in that one. But the Gonzalez performance was poor and the Crawford performance was poor against a very good fighter.
“It’s time for Ricky to step back a level. He needs to put in a great performance, get the confidence back, get the belief of the people again then go for another fight. The first thing he said to me after the fight was, ‘get me Vasquez, Abril or Crawford.’ I thought, ‘blimey mate you’ve just had three tough fights. Have a rest, let’s regroup and think about what went wrong’. The winner of Murray v Crolla is a good fight for Ricky. Now is not the right time for a world title shot.”