5th November 2011
Scotland’s Ricky Burns hopes to follow in the footsteps of countryman Paul Weir by winning two world titles at different weights, but he couldn’t have picked a tougher man to overcome in Australian Michael Katsidis to achieve his ambition and title dream.
Burns 28, from Coatbridge will be making his lightweight debut on Saturday night against Katsidis after relinquishing his WBO super-featherweight crown to move up in weight to challenge for the WBO’s lightweight title at Wembley Arena.
Katsidis brings his all into every fight and is a constant aggressor who will look to take Burns into deep waters and try and drag him into his kind game. But Burns is ready to use his skills and boxing ability to outbox the Aussie behind a good text book jab.
“I think the jab is going to be key,” said Burns. “I am a bit taller and have a longer reach than Michael.
“He is an all-action fighter who likes to come forward, so he is open to being hit. His power is in his favour but we’ve been working on a lot of different things. This fight will go on instinct. A lot of people have been saying that I haven’t got a chance.
“That’s what was said before I beat Roman Martinez for the super-featherweight title. But there is more to come from me and I will prove those people wrong.” he added.
Burns and his trainer Billy Nelson (pictured above) have been poring over fight tapes of Katsidis’ and they point to his loss to Robert ‘The Ghost’ Guerrero in Las Vegas in April as a key fight of how to go about beating the man they call the Brit Basher, following his wins over Graham Earl and Kevin Mitchell over here.
“Guerrero kept him on the end of the jab and really sickened him with it,” Burns told the Glasgow Evening Standard.
“You could say that The Ghost has provided me with the perfect lesson in how to beat Katsidis.
“I believe the weapons I have in my armoury are similar to Guerrero’s and, if I use them in the correct manner, I can enjoy similar success.”
Burns though is confident that it is the fans who will be in for a bonfire night treat this weekend in what promises to be a good fight between two no nonsense boxers who have plenty of respect for each other in and out of the ring.
“I’m raring to go,” Burns added. “I can’t wait. We are both nice guys but that all changes when we get into the ring.
“There has been no trash talk. We have a lot of respect for each other and people know what they’re going to get from us.
Press Conference Video
“Michael is a great fighter, and one of the best at lightweight. I know what he is capable of but these big fights always bring the best out in me.”
Katsidis 31, (pic right) has built up a reputation on British shores after his epic battle with Earl in 2007 and then blowing away Mitchell last year at West Hams football ground. But prior to his last fight a win over Michael Lozada in August he had lost his two previous fights against Juan Manuel Marquez and Guerrero. The battler from Down Under always comes to fight and is one of the most exciting talents on the circuit and he is expected to produce another wholehearted performance against Burns.
“The fans had better get ready for a dynamite fight. I’ve prepared for a war against Burns and that’s is the best way I fight.” said Katsidis.
Speaking at the weigh in on Friday Burns added, “I can’t wait for Saturday night now. All the hard work is done and I just want to get in the ring and win that second world title. I’ve not taken anything for granted and this is going to be the hardest night of my life, but I’m ready for it.”
2008 Olympian Billy Joe Saunders weighed in at 11st 5lbs 8oz for his first professional title challenge against Southern Area Middleweight Champion Gary Boulden who weighed 11st 5lbs 12oz.
Wembly Arena fight night running order
Doors open: 17:30 hrs
Fight 1 – 18:15 hrs
4 X 3 Minute Rounds Light-Welterweight Contest
GARY CORCORAN v BILLY SMITH
Fight 2 – 18:40 hrs
4 X 3 Minute Rounds Middleweight Contest
DARREN CORDONA v AARON FOX
Box Nation Live Broadcast Commences @ 19:00 hrs
Fight 3 – 19:15 hrs
6 X 3 Minute Rounds Welterweight Contest
BRADLEY SKEETE v JAY MORRIS
Fight 4 – 19:45 hrs
4 X 3 Minute Rounds Lightweight Contest
LUKE ROBINSON v SID RAZAK
Fight 5 – 20:10 hrs
4 X 3 Minute Rounds Super-Middleweight Contest
FRANKIE BUGLIONI v SABIE MONTEITH
Fight 6 -20:35 hrs
THE SOUTHERN AREA MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
10 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 160 lbs
GARY BOULDEN v BILLY JOE SAUNDERS
Fight 7 – 21:25 hrs
6 X 3 Minute Rounds Welterweight Contest
GEORGE MICHAEL CARMEN v TOM BOWEN
Fight 8 – 22:00 hrs
THE WBO INTERIM LIGHTWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP OF THE WORLD
12 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 135 lbs
RICKY BURNS v MICHAEL KATSIDIS
Fight 9 – Follow On
THE BRITISH AND COMMONWEALTH SUPER-MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
12 X 3 Minute Rounds @ 168 lbs
GEORGE GROVES v PAUL SMITH
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