Kostya Tszyu to Join Other Legends in Support of Lucas Browne vs Chageav

Boxing legend Kostya Tszyu is jetting into Grozny, Chechnya for Saturday’s big Chageav v Browne WBA title fight.

With multiple world titles to his name, Tszyu is regarded as one of the greats of his age and he will certainly be serving as an inspiration to Browne as he attempts to write his own name into the history books.

Australian has never boasted a world champion in the heavyweight division and Browne feels it is his destiny to change that fact.

“Having Kostya fly in for the fight is massive honour,” Lucas said. “I already have the backing of legends such as Larry Holmes, Ricky Hatton and Nigel Benn so to have Kostya behind me would be the icing on the cake.

“Obviously, he’s got a strong connection with Russia and for all I know he might be backing Chagaev, but I definitely hope it’s me he’s rooting for.

“Being told that such a great fighter and such a proud Aussie is coming to the fight really gets me pumped. I can’t wait to get in there now and become Australia’s first world heavyweight champion with a stunning knockout.”

Ricky Hatton: “If Flanagan Pulls Off the Upset, I’ll Happily Give him my ‘Hitman’ Moniker.”

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Manchester’s original Hitman Ricky Hatton says Terry Flanagan will be crowned the new Hitman if he takes down KO king Jose Zepeda on Saturday 11th July at the Manchester Velodrome.

The British boxing legend is backing Flanagan to emerge victorious in his showdown with the American in the tenth anniversary year of his own sensational victory against then pound-for-pound best Kostya Tszyu.

Unbeaten Flanagan faces the biggest test of his career when he takes on undefeated Zepeda, who’s knocked out 20 of his 23 opponents and 16 of them coming inside three rounds, with the Vacant WBO Lightweight title on the line.

Hatton says he was the underdog against Tszyu, as is Flanagan against Zepeda, but he’s backing Flanagan to pull of an incredible upset and is comparing it Joe Calzaghe’s legendary performance against Jeff Lacy in Manchester.

“Terry is a tremendous fighter and nothing would make me prouder than to see him become world champion in Manchester next month,” Said Hatton.

“Terry is a local lad, he’s come up the hard way and worked his way to the world title and to see him win would be a fantastic success story for Manchester and British boxing,”

“His fight against Zepeda is almost 10 years to the month from my great win over Tszyu, who at the time was a pound-for-pound great, and Terry has to overcome a massive puncher in Zepeda to achieve his dream,”

“You can compare this fight to Joe Calzaghe against Jeff Lacy when they fought in Manchester. Joe was facing a wrecking-machine in Lacy who at the time was the next big thing in boxing and was knocking everybody out. But look what a master boxer like Joe did to him, he took him to pieces. When I look at Zepeda’s record I can see the list of big knockouts, there’s no doubt he can punch, but I don’t see a defining name on there, and to me, Terry is a class boxer,”

“Frank Warren, like he did with me against Tszyu, has got Terry all the advantages, he’s got the world title for him in his home city and with his home fans he can really pull this off and be crowned world champion and if he does that then I’ll happily give him my ‘Hitman’ tag.”

Hatton will be sitting at ringside for Flanagan’s fight against Zepeda and joked that he won’t be slipping in like Flanagan did at his hero’s fight against Tszyu.

And it will also bring back memories for Hatton who fought at the Manchester Velodrome in 2001 in the first defence of his WBU Light-Welterweight title, stopping Jason Rowland in four thrilling rounds.

Hatton added, “I’m only reading now that Terry slipped into ringside for my fight against Tszyu. Can you believe that! I wish I had the balls to do that when I was his age when I went to watch Nigel Benn v Chris Eubank at Old Trafford and they were like dots in the horizon!”

“I can’t wait to watch Terry in action at the Velodrome. It will be like déjà vu for me from all those years ago from my fight against Rowland. That was another incredible night in Manchester and it was the beginnings of the big fight nights in the city and I believe that a great win from Terry will do the same for him.”

Flanagan-Zepeda headlines a sensational line-up on the show that features Ellesmere Port star Paul Butler, the Former IBF World Bantamweight Champion, who makes his highly-anticipated comeback; exciting Cromer talent Liam Walsh defends his British and Commonwealth Super-Featherweight titles against mandatory challenger Troy James; Chorley ace Jack Catterall makes the second defence of his WBO Intercontinental Light-Welterweight title as he marks himself as one of Britain’s hottest young talents.

An action-packed undercard features top talents Alexander Ustinov, Tom Stalker, Adrian Gonzalez, Steven Lewis, Ronnie Heffron, Joe Costello, McCaulay McGowan, Andrew Cain and Kallum De’Ath.

Tickets for ‘Turbo’ priced at £40, £50, £75, £100 and £150 will be available from Eventim on 0844 249 1000 and online at www.eventim.co.uk

The Channel Of Champions, BoxNation, will televise the show live and exclusive on Sky 437/HD 490, Virgin 546 and Talk Talk 525. Subscribe at www.boxnation.com Or watch online at Livesport.tv and via iPhone, iPad or Android.

Terry Flanagan Reflects Back On Ricky Hatton vs Kostya Tszyu Experience

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Manchester star Terry Flanagan sneaked into ringside for Ricky Hatton’s epic fight against Kostya Tszyu a decade ago and now looks to be crowned world champion himself in his home city.

Flanagan challenges for the Vacant WBO World Lightweight title against American knockout sensation Jose Zepeda on Saturday 11th July at the Manchester Velodrome (National Cycling Centre), live and exclusive on BoxNation.

Tickets for ‘Turbo’ priced at £40, £50, £75, £100 and £150 will be available from Eventim on 0844 249 1000 and online at www.eventim.co.uk

As a 15-year-old amateur, Flanagan wanted to go to Hatton’s defining moment against Tszyu at the M.E.N Arena, but couldn’t afford to buy a ticket.

That didn’t deter Flanagan who used his quick feet and slick skills – which he now employs in the ring to amass an unbeaten 27-fight record – to get himself from the first tier to inner ringside where he was up close with his idol.

The cheeky youngster even asked Hatton team member Bobby Rimmer if he could have Ricky’s gloves and then congratulated then pound-for-pound great Tszyu on his performance.

Now Flanagan looks to use that same steel determination to win the world title on the 10th Anniversary year of Hatton’s glorious night.

“There was absolutely no way I could have bought tickets as they were too expensive for a 15-year-old kid!” Said Flanagan.

“But it was a fight that I had to be at, no matter what, and I made it my target to get into the M.E.N Arena so I said ‘I’ve got to try and get in’.

“I went down with a mate of mine and I managed to get inside the entrance which was the first obstacle out of the way, but I lost my mate and from then on it was a solo mission,”

“I got knocked back a few times from stewards as I tried to get through the doors leading to the arena, but then I managed to push in behind someone and just kept walking down the steps and got into the first tier!”

“So for the first couple of rounds I was sat there and it was such an electric atmosphere with everyone glued to the action in the ring I then managed to slip down to the ringside seats for the eighth or ninth round.”

“Then when Tszyu didn’t come out for the twelfth round it just went absolutely mental in the crowd and I jumped over the barrier into the inner ringside to where Hatton was being interviewed on TV,”

“I knew Bobby Rimmer and thought I’d chance it, as I’d had a good run that night, to ask him for Ricky’s gloves. He said, ‘You can’t have them because Ricky puts them in a frame’, it was a bit cheeky, but I thought what the heck. Then I got to congratulate Tszyu, I can’t remember exactly what I said, but it was something like ‘you’re a great fighter’, but I was caught up in all the excitement of Ricky’s win.”

“Funnily, I don’t think I would have the guts to do something like that now, maybe there is a kid who is going to sneak into my fight against Zepeda and have the same story to tell in ten years time, who knows!”

Now the 25-year-old aims to create history and become the first Englishman to win a world lightweight title if he defeats power-punching Zepeda who has stopped 20 out of his 23 victims, with a blistering 16 KO’s coming inside the first three rounds.

He added, “I can’t believe that was ten years ago and I was just some kid who enjoyed boxing and never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I would now be challenging for the world title in my home city almost a decade to that night. I have to pinch myself sometimes to make sure this is all real.”

“It will all be real in the ring when we’re trading punches and the prize is to become world champion. But that same determination to get me ringside is the same desire, focus and determination that I show in the ring and that’s why I will win the world title.”

A sensational line-up on the show will also feature middleweight ace Billy Joe Saunders; exciting Cromer talent Liam Walsh defends his British and Commonwealth Super-Featherweight titles against mandatory challenger Troy James; Ellesmere Port star Paul Butler, the Former IBF World Bantamweight Champion, makes his highly-anticipated comeback; Chorley ace Jack Catterall makes the second defence of his WBO Intercontinental Light-Welterweight title as he marks himself as one of Britain’s hottest young talents.

An action-packed undercard features top talents Tom Stalker, Adrian Gonzalez, Steven Lewis, Joe Costello, McCaulay McGowan and Andrew Cain.

The Channel Of Champions, BoxNation, will televise the show live and exclusive on Sky 437/HD 490, Virgin 546 and Talk Talk 525. Subscribe at www.boxnation.com Or watch online at Livesport.tv and via iPhone, iPad or Android.

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