The 5th of November saw Scotland’s Ricky Burns beat the hard hitting Australian Michael Katsidis via a unanimous decision to become the World Boxing Organization (WBO) Interim Lightweight champion in what was a good performance.

Ricky used his jab well and covered up during Katsidis’s attack which was pretty relentless for twelve rounds. A lot of fans and experts were expecting Burns to lose.

The question a lot of people have asked me is. Who does Ricky fight next? There are a few options out there for Ricky he could face either IBF Champion Miguel Vazquez or WBC Champion Antonio Demarco and go for a second world title.
My choice would be for him to face Kevin Mitchell in a fight which would be a great domestic fight. It is a fight that is easily able to put together as both fighters are promoted by Frank Warren. The venue is a tricky choice in my opinion it would most likely be held in London at the o2 Arena or Wembley Arena.

This has the potential to be a great fight would do nice to top a bill with a strong undercard. Who do I think would win? Personally I think it depends on Mitchell’s mental state if his head is in it then for me he wins the fight. I like Ricky Burns a lot I’m proud for the contribution he has made to British boxing and it was a shame he didn’t win the British boxer of year award.

For me the Mitchell fight should be made it is the best option in my opinion. Maybe the winner of this fight could end up facing the winner of the Murray Vs Rios fight.


By Dan Henderson

Juan Manuel Marquez’s defeat to Manny Pacquiao on Saturday keeps alive the possibility of a fight with WBO interim lightweight champion Ricky Burns.

Marquez is the holder of the full WBO title at Burns’s weight but had moved up to welterweight to take on the legendary Filipino in Las Vegas.

His controversial loss makes it less likely he will vacate his lightweight belt but could mean a date with Burns.

The Scot beat Michael Katsidis on November 5 in his first lightweight bout.

He had relinquished his WBO super-featherweight title to move up a weight class to the 9st 9lb mark.

On Sunday Burns’s trainer Billy Nelson told BBC Scotland: “We would love to fight Marquez but it all depends on what he wants to do.

“He might go for a re-match with Pacquiao, he might retire or he might decide to drop back down to lightweight and defend his title.

“If he does defend his belt, then he has to fight Ricky because he has the interim title and is the mandatory challenger.”

Nelson is still buoyed by Burns’s impressive win over the Australian Katsidis at Wembley eight days ago, satisfied that “the game plan worked to a T” and particularly pleased by the way his boxer controlled the centre of the ring when he opted to.

And Burns’s maturity and quiet confidence at the elite level of the sport means he and trainer Nelson would face Marquez with a belief they could take the full title, with any bout likely to be staged in the United States.

Nelson, who runs The Fighting Scots gym, added: “We wouldn’t be thinking we’d made it just by getting a bout with Marquez; we’d be there to win it.

“We are very positive about the whole thing.”

Nelson will have four boxers on the undercard when Glasgow’s Willie Limond takes on Anthony Crolla for the Manchester fighter’s British lightweight title in Motherwell on 25 November.

However, he did not think it likely that Burns and Limond would go toe to toe in the ring.

“That would be more of a domestic bout. We want Ricky to be fighting for world titles,” said the coach.

“Willie would need to get himself up there in the WBO rankings to fight Ricky. He would need to beat Anthony Crolla and that will be no easy task.”

At the MGM Grand arena, challenger Marquez, now 38, lost out to Pacquiao on a controversial majority decision, with two judges voting in favour of the reigning champion and the third scoring a tie.

Pacquiao, 32, has now won his last 15 bouts, but for Mexico’s Marquez the decision was painfully reminiscent of his defeat to the same fighter in 2008. The pair also drew a contest in May 2004.

Marquez said after the bout: “This was the second robbery and this one was the worst. We won with clearer punches.

“It’s hard when you’re fighting your rival and the three judges too.”

Marquez has won world titles at three weight divisions.

Last year he complained that progression to welterweight was accompanied by a loss of speed.

The coming weeks will reveal whether the ageing star opts to drop from his 142lb for the Pacquiao fight to extend his legacy in the 135lb lightweight category where a hungry Scot awaits.


By Keir Murray
BBC Scotland

Ricky Burns’ decision to abandon his super featherweight belt – and with that, a date on HBO – proved to be a wise gamble.
The Scot immediately made his presence felt in the lightweight division on the strength of his upset win over Michael Katsidis in their 12-round main event at Wembley Arena on Saturday night in London, England.
Both fighters weighed in at the lightweight limit of 135 lb. for their highly anticipated showdown, which aired live on UK’s Boxnation.
Burns wisely came out boxing, shooting his jab and using his height and reach advantages to his benefit. Katsidis found a way inside early on and was able score with right hands upstairs, but was less effective once Burns was able to reestablish distance between the two.
Katsidis closed the gap considerably in the second round, scoring on the inside with left hooks and uppercuts. Burns absorbed well, and by the third round was once again able to stick and move. Katsidis ate a few right hands that had his head snapping back before firing back in return, but Burns was able to counter with left hooks to the body.
More of the same threatened to transpire in the fourth, until Katsidis was able to pin down Burns and wail away at his rail thin frame. Burns took it well and returned fire, but was outgunned for the first time in the fight.
Burns’ corner was displeased with the threat of momentum shifting, demanding their fighter shoot his jab over Katsidis’ guard to prevent the Aussie from getting off his punches. The strategy worked to a degree, but the disparity in power was telling as Katsidis continued to charge forward.
The middle rounds saw both fighters trade away, with Burns surprisingly holding his own every step of the way. Katsidis was the busier of the two, and also managed to constantly corner Burns, who would instinctively cover up and stop punching whenever under fire.
Catching an earful in between rounds, Burns came out in the ninth returning to what worked best. Katsidis was unable to adjust for the first time in several rounds, but fixed that problem in the 10th as Burns spent most of the frame in retreat and on the defensive.
As was the case throughout the fight, Burns managed to recover every time the fight threatened to get away from him. The lanky Scot bounced back well to box his way to a clear cut 11th round, which ultimately proved to be the difference on the cards.
Katsidis came out for the 12th and final round fighting like a man who knew he needed a knockout to win. The two-time lineal title challenger unloaded with non-stop punching, but was a bit overzealous in his attack as referee Phil Edwards twice warned him for rabbit punching.
Another flurry had Burns in trouble, but he punched his way out just enough to cause a break in the action, prompting a time out to have a large strand of loose tape clipped from his glove. Katsidis never fully regained momentum after that, still doing more than enough to win the round, but was far too behind at that point.
All that was left was for the scorecards to be read. The final tallies were way too wide, but had the right guy winning as far as the UK crowd was concerned.  Scores of 117-111 (2x) and 117-112 sent the live patrons into a frenzy, as Burns picks up a belt in a second weight class.
It’s not (yet) a full-fledged title, as Burns now awaits the outcome of lineal lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez’ third fight with Manny Pacquiao next weekend, as well as what Marquez decides to do afterward. In the meantime, he gets to spend the rest of the year reflecting in perhaps the biggest win of his career as he improves to 33-2 (9KO).
The bout extends his winning streak to 18 straight, dating back to 2007. Despite his lack of true knockout power, the supremely conditioned Burns continues to find ways to win, as evidenced in his off-the-canvas upset win over previously unbeaten Rocky Martinez.
Katsidis’ career heads in the exact opposite direction as his status as a top contender is now officially in trouble.
The all-action lightweight has proven himself at the best-of-the-rest level, but his struggles continue at the championship level. He loses for the third time in his last four bouts as he falls to 28-4 (23KO). The loss is also his first on UK soil, having previously knocked out Kevin Mitchell and Graham Earl.

By Jake Donovan, photos by Alan ‘Big Al’ Stevenson



Wembley Arena, London – Former super featherweight champion Ricky Burns (33-2, 9KOs) won a twelve round unanimous decision over Michael Katsidis (28-5, 23KOs) to capture the vacant WBO interim-lightweight title. The scores were 117-112, 117-111 and 117-111.

Burns came out with a very fast jab and followed those punches up with hard right hands. Katsidis charged forward on the inside and threw several combinations, with most of the punches being blocked by Burns’ tight defense. In the second, Burns started landing more of his right hand and gave Katsidis some issues with the jab. They went to war in the third round, with an inside war as both boxers fought tooth and nail. Burns blocking most of Katsidis’ punches and firing hard counters.

Katsidis started coming on strong in the middle rounds, throwing a lot of punches and staying very busy to keep Burns pinned against the ropes. Burns started his own rally, as Katsidis tired, in the ninth round. In the tenth, Katsidis started landing a few big punches that were catching Burns flush. Burns sucked it up in the eleventh to win a close boxing struggle. In the twelfth, Katsidis came out winging bombs and letting everything go with both hands, with Burns mostly holding on and trying to block the big shots. They started trading punches in the final minute, but Katsidis bulled forward and started pushing Burns back. The back and forth trading continued until the final bell.

Billy Joe Saunders (11-0) sealed his first professional title with a comfortable points victory to secure the Southern Area championship with a victory against Gary Boulden. The Hertford boxer controlled the fight from the first round and despite not finding a knockout punch in the ten-round contest, he looked in impressive form. Saunders put Boulden through the wars but to his credit the former-champion held on to the end in a battling display.

Frank Buglioni (1-0) marked his professional debut with a stunning first round knockout to defeat Sabie Montieth. Buglioni, who signed for Frank Warren in the summer, stopped Montieth who had never been stopped before 20 second before the end of the first round. Montieth went with the attitude to shake up Buglioni on his first outing but that didn’t deter Buglioni who caught the Woodford fighter late in the round, his opponent raised to his feet but the referee waved the fight off to give the debutant a first-round knockout victory.

Luke Robinson (3-0) won his third professional fight when he defeated Sid Razak comfortably on points in the four-round lightweight contest. Robinson, making his third pro outing, had dominated the first three rounds before surviving a late rally from Razak in the fourth to claim the win. 

Bradley ‘Super’ Skeete (5-0) continued his bright start on the professional scene as the referee stopped the fight against Jay Morris early in the fifth round on his fifth pro outing. Skeete had controlled the fight from the opening bell and the pressure paid off early in the fifth as the referee stopped the contest to hand the Penge fighter a fifth successive victory since turning pro last October. The official believed Morris could no longer continue in the fifth. An unhappy Morris did not agree with the decision and immediately left the ring after throwing his gloves down.

Darren Cordona overcame Aaron Fox to record his first professional win on his debut in front of the north London crowd in a middleweight four-round contest. The Guilford-born fighter cleverly out-boxed Fox to score his first professional victory 39-38.

Gary Corcoran (1-0) picked up his first professional victory with a comfortable points win against Billy Smith on his debut as he kicked off the ‘Gladiator’ bill at Wembley Arena. The light welterweight comprehensively defeated his experienced opponent as he dominated throughout to take the fight on the referee’s card 40-36. Corcoran went in search for a debut knockout victory in the fourth round but couldn’t manager it as Smith held on. Corcoran stepped up the pressure and dished out the punishment in the last round to secure a comfortable debut win.


By Miguel Rivera

The winner of the lightweight battle between Ricky Burns and Michael Katsidis, will fall in line for a shot at WBO lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez. The sanctioning body issued a ruling at their annual convention in Puerto Rico, that Marquez would have to face the Burns-Katsidis.

The fight depends on the outcome of Marquez’s trilogy bout, set for November 12 in Las Vegas, with WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao. It also depends on whether or not Marquez, win or lose with Pacquiao, returns to the lightweight division.

Burns and Katsidis will battle for the vacant WBO interim title on November 5th at Wembley Arena in London. If Marquez decides to continue his career above 135-pounds, the winner of Burns-Katsidis would become the full champion.

Marquez already faced Katsidis in 2010, where the Mexican boxer got off the floor in the third round to stop the tough Australian in the ninth.