Ricky Hatton faces tough fight against Viacheslav Senchenko in Manchester, says Glenn McCrory
Glenn McCrory says Ricky Hatton will shine in patches this weekend, but may not do enough to win.
Last Updated: 26/11/12 11:41am
I know the Hitman will have worked terribly hard in the lead up to his comeback bout against Viacheslav Senchenko because Bob Shannon is a great trainer and a good guy - and because it means so much to Ricky.
Hatton's life came crashing down when he lost to Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao and quit the sport, and his return to the ring is all about redemption, supressing some demons and his need to re-establish himself as a boxing force.
Ricky was a true fighter in his heyday, my kind of fighter; he was prepared to get hurt in order to inflict pain and destroy his opponent. He wasn't looking to be slick or pick up an easy win, he was there to entertain and get involved in a scrap.
I'm sure Hatton would love to be just like that that against Senchenko but after three-and-a-half years out of the ring it will be asking a lot for him to be as sharp.
I expect we will see cameos of the old Ricky, which I'm sure will delight the masses of fans at the Manchester Arena, but it won't be like before.
He will also have to contend with a very dangerous opponent; Senchenko, a technically-sound former world champion, would have been a tricky man to overcome had Ricky fought him in 2009, but to tackle him after a spell out of the sport will make it doubly difficult.
I have no doubt that Ricky will have his eyes on another world title and, in the process, proving all those that have questioned his decision to lace up the gloves again wrong - but I would like him to beat Senchenko, say: 'Thank you very much' and walk away.
However, even that will be hard to accomplish as boxing is not like the story of Handesl and Gretel, it is not a fairy-tale, it is a tough, tough business. I have severe doubts that Ricky, who I love to pieces, will win this fight, but I wish him all the best.
Rendall Munroe and Scott Quigg will square off on Hatton's undercard in a rematch from their June bout, which ended as a technical draw after a nasty clash of heads in the third round.
Munroe, who lost on points when he battled for the WBC super-bantamweight title against Toshiaki Nishioka in 2010, is a cut above Quigg when he is at his best, but Quigg is a developing talent so it's hard to pick a winner.
Munroe is the older man at 32 but he is not seeing this as a retirement fight and he knows that if he can pick up the win then clashes with WBA champion Guillermo Rigondeaux and Commonwealth titlist Carl Frampton could materialise.
The Leicester fighter will have to use his liveliness and take Quigg, who has looked a little pedestrian in the past against some reasonable but not great boxers, and not improved to the levels I expected, to places he has never been before.
Therefore, this is an acid test for Quigg and if he can come through the fight with flying colours then you could argue that he is world class, but I think Munroe has too much about for this to turn into a breeze for the man from Bury.
So much can happen in a boxing ring, as we saw when these two fighters banged heads in the summer, and for that reason I think Munroe, who has more experience and a better all-round skillset, will edge it - and then, hopefully, meet Frampton.