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Last Updated: Tuesday, 8 June, 2004, 10:29 GMT 11:29 UK
Witter primed for Hatton
By Ben Dirs

Junior Witter
Witter has 29 wins, one loss and two draws from 32 fights
European light welterweight champion Junior Witter would fight Ricky Hatton any time, any place and anywhere, his promoter Mick Hennessy says.

Witter won the European crown with an impressive second-round stoppage of Salvatore Battaglia last Wednesday.

And Hennessy said Witter is prepared to be "very accommodating" in negotiating a match with Manchester's WBU champion.

"Junior's reasonable around the money so the ball's in Frank Warren and Hatton's court," said Hennessy.

And Hennessy, whose shows are broadcast by the BBC, said a Witter v Hatton match was still a possibility despite Hatton's contacts with Sky.

"The fact they fight on different TV channels shouldn't be a problem because British boxing will suffer.

Broadcasters would rather see a fantastic match than for it not to happen
Promoter Mick Hennessy

"The BBC and Sky would put in purse bids and if one's prepared to put up more than the other then that's where the fight should be.

"Broadcasters would rather see a fantastic match than for it not to happen. Warren would want to promote it in Manchester because Hatton's a big draw and he'd put in a serious bid."

The European title gives Bradford's Witter some bargaining power on the world scene and he has moved up to number nine in the respected Ring Magazine ratings.

In contrast, Hatton recently told of his frustration at not being given the big fights he has been promised by Warren.

The "Hitman" was expected to fight a top-10 opponent in Manchester this Saturday but will instead fight Argentine Carlos Wilfredo Vilches.

Ricky Hatton
Is Hatton getting frustrated?

But Warren's reluctance to play ball may stem from Witter's decision to sign with rival promoters Hennessey Sports last December.

Meanwhile, the next fight for 30-year-old Witter should be a defence of his European belt against German-based Turk Oktay Urkal.

In April, Urkal controversially lost a WBA interim title challenge to Vivian Harris and he also lost on points to undisputed champion Kostya Tszyu in 2001.

"That's an incredible fight for the European title and just goes to show how big some of these European titles are," said Hennessy.

"The light welterweight division is very exciting and the beauty of Junior is he's prepared and wants to fight them now - he'd fight (Puerto Rico's) Miguel Cotto tomorrow.

"From now on in there will be only big fights for him."

Witter outclasses Battaglia
02 Jun 04  |  Boxing
Hatton targets big names
04 Jun 04  |  Boxing
Witter targets Hatton
13 May 04  |  Boxing

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