Katsidis on Burns, Mitchell, Earl, being a warrior and West Ham United

25 Oct

Tommy Barber – London

Gladiatorial prizefighter Michael Katsidis, who sports a Greek spartan helmet and warrior’s skirt whilst making his ring walks, returns to the UK to box resiliant Scotsman and former WBO super featherweight world champion Ricky Burns, who is a debutant in the lightweight division gunning against a man accustomed to blood and guts battles between 135lbs and 140lbs and one whom was also eager to offer his appraisal of a trident of British boxers…

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The Great 'Brit Basher'. Credit: Stacey Verbeek - Maple Avenue Boxing Gym

“Burns has better boxing ability than both Kevin Mitchell and Graham Earl,” said Katsidis (28-4-0, 23ko) ahead of his November 5 bout against Burns which is set to be staged in the Wembley Arena, London; a city the Australian has a perfect 2-0-0, 2ko record in thanks to a brace of stunning stoppage victories over Earl in 2007 and Mitchell three years later.

“Earl has the biggest heart out of them while Mitchell is a little inconsistent. Burns will be the best I have faced in the UK,” noted the 31-year-old fan favourite. “Burns is powerful and is a very consistent fighter. He has showed it in the past. It will be tough like I said he is more consistent that Mitchell and he is a better boxer than Earl, if we are to compare him with the English lads.”

Coatbridge athlete Burns, 28, is more accustomed to campaigning at 130lbs. His super featherweight career was punctuated by the unlikely capture of the WBO world title in 2010 when he overcame the underdog label to decision highly-fancied Rocky Roman Martinez. He since made three defences, yet was without a defining dancing partner. Struggling to make weight, he moved to lightweight and took on one of the most recognisable names in the division.

“I don’t think Burns will be at a disadvantage moving up a weight,” said Katsidis. “I think it’s a move he should have made a long time ago. Some underestimate his power but not me. I do not feel I am the favourite for this fight or that I have the edge. I feel we are on par. I may be experienced at the top level but Burns has an awful a lot of experience too. He showed that last year when he won his title.”

Katsidis’ last contest in Blighty was a three round blowout of the previously unbeaten Mitchell, a boxer who has since gone on to impressively teekayo domestic rival John Murray. The fight with Mitchell was held at the Boleyn Ground in West Ham, east London; the home of West Ham United football club.

“I love England,” Katsidis enthused. “I want to live there. It is a fantastic place and some where I always want to fight. Hopefully I can be based there soon. The West Ham fans when I faced Mitchell showed why the country is so great. They appreciated me, they appreciate warriors.”

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