Ricky Hatton, the battling British Bulldog bruised, beaten and battered by better boxer American Floyd Mayweather at the weekend, has insisted he will not retire, and has stated his intention to return to the ring in a bout at Salford Working Men's Club next week.
Hatton, beaten senseless in the 10th round of the 'contest', narrowly avoided brain damage when Mayweather clobbered him to a knockout in Las Vegas. Medics said that, if Hatton had a brain in his bonce, it would almost certainly have been damaged.
The Mancunian Hitman, as he calls himself, had the support of several thousand British fans who had made the expensive journey to the States so that they wouldn't have to face Christmas shopping with their wives.
Hatton's corner threw in the towel in the 10th, but Hatton himself says that he will fight on, as he can't do anything else. His 'comeback' starts in Salford next Wednesday at 8pm when he comes up against local oik Sugar Ray Ecklesthwaite.
The venue is notorious in the area for bare-knuckle fights, and unlimited fighting times. Some bouts go on for days.
Ecklesthwaite is expected to weigh in a lot heavier than Hatton, as he regularly takes on large amounts of beer in the afternoons. Currently, and historically, unemployed, Sugar Ray usually fights fully clothed, and sometimes with a pool cue.
Speaking on BBC Radio 5Live, ex-boxer Barry McGuigan told listeners:
"Ecklesthwaite to win sometime after midnight."