Ricky Burns puts his WBO title on the line against replacement Jose Ocampo
Last Updated: November 29, 2012 1:38pm
Ricky Burns: Defends his world title against replacement opponent Jose Ocampo
Ricky Burns will defend his world title against Jose Ocampo after the Filipino fighter replaced the injured Liam Walsh.
Burns was originally due to make the third defence of his WBO lightweight title against Walsh, but the Norfolk man withdrew after he was hurt in a car crash and Ocampo will now face the Scot at London's ExCeL on 15 December.
The 23-year-old Ocampo has racked up 17 wins, with 12 coming inside the distance, but the southpaw has also suffered five defeats and will be stepping up from super-featherweight to battle Burns.
Victory for Burns could pave the way for a unification clash with highly-rated American Adrien Broner, who holds the WBC belt, but the Coatbridge fighter is refusing to look past Ocampo.
"I'd say that this is going to be the hardest fight of my career so far against a young hungry challenger who will be looking to take my title," he said.
"Filipino fighters are as tough as they come, just look at (Manny) Pacquiao and Nonito Donaire, like the Mexicans and Africans they come to have a fight and Ocampo will do just that.
"If he fights like those two, as people say he does, then I'll be in for a tough night.
"It's unfortunate that Walsh had an accident and had to pull out of our fight, but I'm a world champion and I have to deal with these changes and I'm confident I'll deal with Ocampo."
Promoter Frank Warren is confident that the Broner fight can be made if Burns gets past Ocampo.
He said: "It's going to be hard for Ricky, he's been training to face Walsh and in an ideal world he would have had more time to prepare for the different style that Ocampo will bring.
"He can't afford to slip up, though, we are virtually there with the fight against Broner for next year and that will only happen if he comes through against Ocampo."