Anthony Crolla and Ricky Burns clash in Manchester Oct 7th

Anthony Crolla and Ricky Burns clash in Manchester Oct 7th

Published 09/09/2017


Former world champions Anthony Crolla and Ricky Burns face off in a scheduled 12 round lightweight bout in the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England. The clash will take place on Saturday, October 7th and will be broadcast live in the US on AWE – A Wealth of Entertainment.

Photo: Matchroom Boxing

Photo: Matchroom Boxing

 

Manchester’s own Crolla (31-6-3, 13 KOs) won the WBA Lightweight title in 2015 after landing a crushing body shot to Darleys Perez, sending him to the canvas and thrilling his hometown fans. Crolla went on to defend the title with a hard won, come from behind victory over Ismael Barroso. A unanimous decision victory to Jorge Linares in 2016 saw Crolla lose the title and he was unsuccessful in a second match up with Linares coming up short on a unanimous decision in March of this year.

“The 24 rounds with Linares puts me in good stead. They weren’t fights where I took a serious beating with huge shots bouncing my head back. Other than the knockdown, I wasn’t on wobbly legs. I enjoyed the experience. I made improvements in the build-up which I didn’t get to show on the night which is a credit to Jorge.”

The fight comes at a good time for Crolla, who is not prepared to slow approach in coming back of his recent losses,

“It’s at a good time for both of us. A win puts us back in the mix for titles, I’m not going to say the loser has nowhere to go, but it’s going to be a tough road back. We’re both coming off losing our World Titles and the incentive is to win the fight and get back in the frame.

”I could have a tune up fight on the undercard of somewhere and an easier opponent to get me back into things and then a big fight after but I’m not interested in that.”

Crolla is looking forward to the match up, particularly as it is in his home town of Manchester, "I'm really happy the fight is in Manchester," said Crolla. "It's going to be one of the first shows since that horrible night with the bombings so it means an awful lot to go back. A lot of people have been asking me to come back to the Arena for my next fight. But if there's a rematch, I'll happily go to Glasgow… I'm looking forward to going to battle and putting on a display for the fans… I've got nothing against Ricky, he's a good guy. But once that bell goes we'll both be willing to dig deep. I've wanted this for a long time, I can't wait."

Scotland native, Ricky Burns (41-6-1, 14 KOs), also eager for the fight, is very conscious that both boxers are coming of World Title losses and it will be a long, hard road back for whomever comes out second best. Burns won the WBO Jr Lightweight World title in 2010, defeating Roman Martinez by unanimous decision and made three successful defences of the title. He moved up Lightweight in 2011 and bested Michael Katsidis by unanimous decision to earn the WBO Interim Lightweight title, later losing it to Terence Crawford in 2014 after being elevated to full champion. Burns recovered to become a three-division champion snagging the WBA Super Lightweight World Championship in May, 2016 in a unanimous decision win over Michele Di Rocco. Previously undefeated Julius Indongo stripped him of the title in Burns’ last fight in Glasgow in April.

“It’s a make or break fight for the both of us. Even before I fought Di Rocco I always said I just want to take it one fight at a time. I’ve been the same the whole way through my career but fingers crossed a win here can lead to bigger things,” said Burns, “When I held World titles at Super-Featherweight and Lightweight, Crolla’s name was always mentioned but it never happened. He’s a great guy and a great fighter, I don’t think you’ll get much trash talk in the build-up. The best man will win on the night… It’s going to be a great fight… People want to see it and now the deal is done I’m looking forward to it… It’s going to be hard, tough fight. The two of us will come out and go for it - the fans are the real winners.”

"What a fight between two great warriors'" said promoter Eddie Hearn. "Both Anthony and Ricky are in similar places in the careers and they know that this absolute must win. Knowing these two like I do this is going to be a fight until the finishing bell with neither taking a backward step. It's an all-British super fight between two great World champions and fans in the Manchester Arena and watching on Sky Sports can expect a wonderful event."

Viewers in the US can tune in to Crolla vs Burns on AWE on Saturday, October 7th. AWE is available on over a hundred cable systems, including AT&T U-Verse, ch 147 and 1147 in HD, Verizon FiOS TV, ch 169 and 669 in HD. and DirecTV, ch 387. 

 

Feature Photo: Matchroom Boxing

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