So far the promotion of the Ricky Hatton – Jose Luis Castillo bout on the 23rd has been a well-mannered, even tempered, respectful love-in as the two fighters seek to demonstrate their respect for each other. Both are blue-collar professionals with humility and class so in truth, cheap smack talk would be a surprise. However, Castillo today fired the first broadside as they bid to build up interest in their clash. According to the veteran Mexican, Hatton’s pretty 42-0 record doesn’t compare favourably with his own less pristine ledger; “I don’t think for one minute Ricky Hatton’s record bears any comparison with mine.”Yahoo, among others, carry the story here.
Jose Luis Castillo has belittled Ricky Hatton’s unbeaten record and vowed to bring it to an end when the pair meet on June 23 to contest the IBO light welterweight title.
“Hitman” Hatton has an impressive 42-0 record, but Castillo insists he is not intimidated by the numbers and believes the 28-year-old Brit has not faced enough big names.
An aging Kostya Tszyu, whom Hatton beat in 11 rounds two years ago, remains his biggest scalp and Mexican legend Castillo has vowed he will not to be added to that list at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas.
“I don’t think for one minute Ricky Hatton’s record bears any comparison with mine,” Castillo said. “He fought Tszyu when Kostya was on the way down and even then Ricky had home advantage.
“I have fought and beaten some of the best fighters in the world whereas Hatton hasn’t got names like Diego Corrales, Floyd Mayweather Jr. or Joel Casamayor on his record. He is 42-0 but things like unbeaten records can be very misleading. I am not bothered about his unbeaten record. It will end on June 23.”
Castillo conceded that Hatton was a tough proposition and has trained harder than ever before for the bout.
“Hatton is a good, strong fighter, but I am going to knock him out and I am then going to get my revenge on Mayweather,” Castillo said. “I started in the gym 12 weeks ago and I have never worked this hard for any fight. It will be the best Jose Luis Castillo the world has ever seen.
“I cannot wait. It is like a new beginning for me. My last fight (against Herman Ngoudjo) was just a warm-up. This is the real thing. I need the motivation of facing someone like Hatton to get the best out of me. I have been in a lot of big wars and I need the best opponents to make me fight at my best. When I lost to Diego Corrales the first time, I regrouped and beat him easily when we met again.”
Castillo knows what he’ll use as his weapon against Hatton. “I have best uppercut in the division and I will use it against Hatton,” Castillo said. “Ricky is used to slow, cumbersome fighters, but I have real hand speed and that will cut him down.
“Hatton is there to be beaten and I know I am going to be the first boxer to do it. My trainer told me he has never seen me spar better. That is a warning to Hatton and he should know that on June 23 it will be a war and I’m going to win that war”
In an interesting promotional move, the Hatton v Castillo fight now has it’s own online presence. Visit it at www.gladiatorsthefight.com