Matthew Hatton wants WBA champion Vyacheslav Senchenko

'Magic' reveals the MBaye fight is off for now

By: Matthew Hatton

21 June 2011    |    0 Comments

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Matthew Hatton wants WBA champion Vyacheslav Senchenko | Fighting Fit
Hatton-Alvarez | Fighting Fit
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So, like me (see above), Ryan Rhodes lost to Saul Alvarez, getting stopped in the final round on Saturday night. I thought Ryan put up a good fight, you certainly couldn’t accuse him of being able to put more in than he did but he was up against an exceptional fighter, and one who is getting better all the time. His defence has improved because even when Ryan was letting his shots go, trying to turn the tide, he couldn’t lay a glove on him. The result definitely gives me encouragement; I know the level I’m at. Ryan is an excellent fighter, and was dominant at European level. I never felt outclassed against Alvarez, he was just too big for me. But he outboxed, outfought and outclassed Ryan.

A few people are writing Ryan off now, but if he still has the fire I see no reason why he should retire. He was the No. 1 in Europe, his ranking will still be high and being the European champion is great in itself. I would pick that title back up, get a couple of wins, and I think there are other champions he has a better chance of beating. There are some good fights out there for him.

As for me, for whatever reason and after trying for weeks, it looks like my challenge to WBA Interim welterweight champion Souleymane MBaye is not happening now. I’m a little disappointed because I’ve wasted so much time and I want to come back from a defeat, even if I acquitted myself well. So I’m fighting on August 19 in Blackpool. It’s a 10-rounder just to get back in there; I like to stay busy and enjoy me boxing. I’m the European mandatory challenger so it’s just a case of getting back in the ring and, if I can’t get a world title fight yet, getting the European belt back. Next week, the vacant title is decided between Leonard Bundu and Daniele Petrucci, who stopped my former conqueror Craig Watson, which shows the level of these guys. I’ll be looking out for that fight as I will probably be fighting the winner. The overall aim is to get into a mandatory position for a world title shot. The negotiations with Mbaye, because it was a voluntary defence, some of the stuff they wanted was absolutely ridiculous; that’s the problem challenging as a voluntary – they can dictate terms and those terms are sometimes not reasonable. I’d like to fight Vyacheslav Senchenko, the WBA champion. He’s fought nobody, he doesn’t leave home in the Ukraine, and I know he was offered far more money to fight Alvarez than I took. I’m 100 per cent confident of beating him.

Now I have a date, I’m back in full training. I love training and I’m in decent shape. I’ll be coming in at the championship weight, and I’m looking forward to re-establishing myself at welterweight. I should have an opponent soon, but I’m just looking forward to getting back in the ring.

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