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Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Hatton fumes over Roach knockout jibe

MANILA, Philippines—Ricky Hatton has a big motivation to beat Manny Pacquiao on May 2 in Las Vegas other than wresting the Filipino superstar’s distinction as the world’s best pound-for-pound fighter.

It’s all about his contempt for Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach.

The Mancunian “Hitman” wants Roach to eat his words regarding the fight’s outcome. (A Mancunian is a native of the British city of Manchester.)

Hatton was particularly annoyed by Roach’s prediction that Pacquiao will emerge victorious in three rounds.

“Manny is a good puncher, and he punches hard enough to knock anyone out, but when he [Roach] says three rounds, I feel a bit insulted,” a fuming Hatton told Gareth A. Davies of Telegraph Sport.

“Bearing in mind that he has fought a lot smaller men than me, and I have been in with a few monsters, Manny would look like one The Borrowers stood next to Luis Collazo.”

The 27-year-old Collazo is a 5-foot-9 brawler from whom Hatton took the WBA welterweight crown by unanimous decision in 2006.

“I’m not saying Manny can’t knock me out, but if anyone is going to win in three rounds, I think I would be the safer bet to do that to him,” said Hatton, who is still unbeaten as a junior welterweight.

Hatton said he intends to intimidate Pacquiao by entering the ring at 154 lb.

Hatton added that he is ahead of schedule, just 10 lb off the 140 lb limit and in top shape with no dieting problem whatsoever.

Having started training camp earlier than Pacquiao, Hatton also brushed off suggestions that he’s peaking too early.

“There is no chance I’m overtraining,” he said. “I feel very good, very relaxed and where I wanted to be at this point.”


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