BURNS MEETS CARDLE ON USYK-BELLEW BILL


Ricky Burns and Scott Cardle meet on the undercard of Tony Bellew’s undisputed Cruiserweight clash with Oleksandr Uysk at Manchester Arena on Saturday November 10, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and DAZN in the US.

Burns created history in Scotland in May 2016 when he defeated Michele Di Rocco in Glasgow to land the WBA World Super-Lightweight title and become the country’s first ever three-weight World Champion.

The Coatbridge star successfully defended the crown against tough mandatory Kiryl Relikh in Glasgow in October 2016 before falling short in a unification battle with IBF king Julius Indongo in April.He won his 50th fight as a professional in June, stopping Croat Ivan Njegac after four rounds and returns to the scene of his points loss to Anthony Crolla determined to prove he still has big ambitions at World level.

“There’s some big fights to be made in the Lightweight division and a win here in front of such a large PPV audience will put me further in the frame for next year,” said Burns.

“The Manchester crowd last time out was fantastic and obviously Anthony Crolla is fighting on the bill, I’d still love that rematch down the line but first and foremost Scotty has my attention for next Saturday.

“I get on really well with Scotty and his family. They have helped me out with some sparring down the years but this is strictly business. It was a shame my gym mate Joe Cordina pulled out through injury but this is boxing. I’ll shake Scotty’s hand before and after the fight.

“Training has been going well, I’m always keeping busy in the gym waiting for the phone to ring. It doesn’t matter who I fight, I train for every fight the same so the short notice doesn’t change anything drastically in terms of our preparation. These domestic dustups get the fans excited and it’s a great show to be fighting on.”

“This is a huge fight to get me back to where I want to be,” said Cardle. “Ricky is a former three-weight World Champion and a Scottish great, a win against him would hopefully set up some even bigger fights down the line. 
“This is a massive occasion for me, I’ve got the opportunity and now it’s time for me to deliver. I can’t turn fights like this down, especially at this stage of my career. The short notice isn’t ideal but I’ve trained hard for the Cordina fight and I’ll be ready next Saturday.

“Ricky is a very physical fighter, he’s got a great jab and he’s been in there with the best. He’s one of the toughest men in the sport and I’m prepared to go the distance with him. I’ll need to stay smart and use my speed on the night. 

“I’m getting to a certain age now and I want to be able to look back on my career and be happy with what I’ve achieved. I want to reach World level before I call it a day and a win over a name like Burns could be the start of something big”

Very limited tickets are available to purchase from www.stubhub.co.uk and www.manchester-arena.com

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CROLLA: I GENUINELY BELIEVE THE BEST OF ME IS STILL TO COME

Anthony Crolla Training session ahead of his fight against Daud Yordan on 10/11/18 at Manchester Arena. 30th October 2018 Picture By Mark Robinson.

CROLLA: I GENUINELY BELIEVE THE BEST OF ME IS STILL TO COME
‘Million Dollar’ determined to reclaim World title in 2019
Anthony Crolla says his best is still to come as he prepares to take on Daud Yordan in a final eliminator for the WBA Lightweight World title on the undercard of Tony Bellew’s undisputed Cruiserweight clash with Oleksandr Usyk at Manchester Arena on November 10, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and DAZN in the US. 
 
‘Million Dollar’ returns to his second home for the first time since his win over three-weight king Ricky Burns in 2017 and the 31-year-old is aiming to steal the show with another memorable performance in front of a packed-out arena. 
 
A former World Champion, Crolla is eager to reclaim his WBA World title currently held by pound-for-pound star Vasiliy Lomachenko, and would welcome a huge clash with the Ukrainian in 2019, despite the prospect of heading into that fight as a huge underdog.
 
“Daud Jordan is a very dangerous opponent,” said Crolla. “He’s been in and around World Class operators for a number of years. He’s won 38 with a lot of knockouts and lost 3. If I’m not at my best, he’ll turn me over so I’ve got to raise my performance levels and win this which will open the door for another World title shot.
 
“Joe thinks this is going to be a long, hard and brutal fight so in sparring we’ve tried to be smart so I’m fresh for fight night. The styles will gel and I’m sure it’ll be a great fight.
 
“I can’t fight on emotions and try to be the hero. It’ll come down to pedigree but I know all in all it’s going to be tough in there. I’m confident I’ve put in the hard work in camp which will help me be victorious on the night.”
 
Crolla enjoyed a rollercoaster ride as WBA king at 135lbs, he finally got his first shot at the title in July 2015 against Darleys Perez in Manchester but was edged out in a controversial draw. 

The pair rematched in the same venue five months later and Crolla took his second chance out of the judges’ hands with a stunning 6th round KO from a brutal body shot. Crolla delivered the same salvo against dangerous mandatory challenger Ismael Barroso in in May 2016 to halt the Venezuelan in round seven.

That win led to a keenly fought pair of unification battles with Jorge Linares that the visitor won, but Crolla insists he can still deliver on the World stage.

“I believe I graft as hard as anyone out there,” he added. “It’s in my make up to be honest, I know I’m not the most talented fighter out there, I never have been and I never will be but I know I have to make up for it with hard work. 
 
“My motivation every morning is my little boy, family and those who pay money to come and watch me. It’s a World title final eliminator in my home town; if I can’t get up for that I’m in the wrong sport. It’s a short career, these nights don’t come around too often and when I’m out I’ll miss them dearly.
 
“I’m not a young man anymore but I genuinely believe the best of me is still to come. Joe thinks I’m boxing better than ever. All the numbers I hit in training are on the rise.  I’m nearly 32, the body comes under stress at times but I’ve looked after myself and I’m ready to go into the trenches again next week.”

Very limited tickets are available to purchase from www.stubhub.co.uk and www.manchester-arena.com.

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OLEKSANDR USYK VS. TONY BELLEW PRESS CONFERENCE QUOTES

Oleksandr Usyk and Tony Bellew head to head press conference to announce their fight for the WBC, IBF, WBA, WBO and Ring Magazine Cruiserweight World Titles on 10th November 2018 at Manchester Arena
24th September 2018
Picture By Mark Robinson.

 

Eddie Hearn:
 

“Good afternoon everyone and welcome to Manchester. The big fights just keep on coming after a fantastic weekend at Wembley Stadium in front of 80,000 people where Anthony Joshua defended his World titles in a brilliant fight against Alexander Povetkin. We bring you now what I believe is fight of the year, Tony Bellew challenging Oleksandr Usyk for the WBO, WBA, IBF, WBC and Ring Magazine World Championship titles – the first ever four belt undisputed fight ever in British boxing history and a massive event on November 10, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and DAZN across America as well. We have a huge night of boxing planned and already very few tickets left, we went on sale at midday today. There’s British Championship fights on the card between Ryan Walsh and Isaac Lowe, Scotty Cardle challenging Joe Cordina and Anthony Crolla here today will be in a Final Eliminator for the WBA title against Daud Yordan, back in the arena that has seen him in so many great fights. Josh Kelly will be on the card defending his WBA International title as well.”
 

Adam Smith, Head of Sky Sports Boxing:
 

“It was another magnificent occasion at Wembley Stadium on Saturday night in front of 80,000 people. I’ve got to pinch myself a little bit, being amongst not only Tony Bellew today, but Oleksandr Usyk and Vasyl Lomachenko – pound for pound greats. This is a fantastic era, it’s wonderful that these guys are giving us the best entertainment in the ring and we never forget that the fighters are what matters most. When Eddie told me about this matchup I had to sit down, Tony is going in after the double over David Haye and I’ve admired Oleksadnr Usyk for some years now.”
 

Gilberto Mendoza, President of the World Boxing Association:
 

“Good afternoon everyone, thank you England for once again welcoming the WBA. To have Tony Bellew fighting for one of the WBA World titles against one of the best boxers in the sport right now and a pound-for-pound star is great. The fight will be very interesting. We are always looking to put on the best fights for the fans. It’s also an honour to have Antony Crolla fighting in an eliminator for the WBA World title. It’s going to be a great night of boxing and I’m really pleased this is happening in England.”
 

Alex Karassyuk, K2 Promotions:
 

“It’s a great pleasure being here introducing such a great event on November 10. First of all, I would like to give huge credit to Eddie and his partners Sky Sports for the job they have done in recent years, giving new life to British boxing and boxing in the whole World. I hope our cooperation will not just be within one fight or two fights, but we will be able to bring some top-level events to Britain, Ukraine and the rest of the World. I would like to say some pleasant words to the true warrior, the lion heart that we respect so much, Tony Bellew. He proved many times that being an underdog does not mean being a loser. Of course, I will be supporting Usyk on November 10, but I want to wish Tony good luck and a successful training camp. Usyk is just extraordinary, he’s one in a million. Together we have accomplished every boxers’ dream within just 15 fights. In five years we collected all of the belts in the division. Now we are here in the native land of boxing. This matchup is something the World was waiting for, the winner will get all of these amazing belts and probably book a place in the boxing Hall of Fame. This is history in the making.”
 

Egis Klimas, manager of Oleksandr Usyk:
 

“I’m very proud to represent the best Cruiserweight in the division right now. I can say that for sure it is going to be a very tough fight. It’s not going to be an easy walk in the park. As we know, Tony is a very good fighter. Both of these guys want a challenge. Oleksandr doesn’t just want to defend his belts, he wants a challenge, just like Tony did during his age. He was the best Cruiserweight and there was nobody left for him to fight so he stepped into the Heavyweight division, that says a lot. Now that he has a challenge, he says ‘screw it, I’m coming down, I want a challenge and I want those belts’. That’s why I think this is going to be a very good bout.”
 

Anthony Crolla – Manchester, England – 33-6-3, 13 KO’s – fighting Daud Yordan in a Final Eliminator for the WBA Lightweight World title:
 

“It’s a huge fight and I think mine and Daud Yordan’s styles will gel nicely, it’s going to be a great fight. There’s a lot of people going on about me being on the undercard for the first time in a while, but I’m honoured to be on the card with two fantastic fighters, I go way back with Tony Bellew. I’m just happy to be back in Manchester. It’s been a bit of a slow year with injuries and stuff, but I believe I’m better than ever. In the gym I’m improving and I’m looking forward to being back. I’d never be disrespectful and call Vasyl Lomachenko out but if he ever wants to fight in England and if I win on November 10 then there’s a good chance that fight happens, I’d love to get in the ring with him, he’s a fantastic fighter and one of the best fighters on the planet. It’s something that I’d look forward to, of course.”
 

Dave Coldwell, trainer of Tony Bellew:
 

“It’s something that I look at as a once in a lifetime opportunity. I’m fortunate enough to have worked with Tony for a number of years and for me, to have the kind of fighter that he is and to have taken the fights that he has, that’s once in a lifetime stuff. To cap it off with an undisputed Cruiserweight World title fight is as big as it gets, it’s for all of the marbles, it’s the pinnacle.
 

“I wanted him to retire and walk away after the last David Haye fight. I saw Usyk call Tony’s name straight after winning the World Super Series during his interview in the ring and I thought ‘oh sh*t we’re going again’. I just knew, I didn’t have to text him or anything, I just knew it was a fight that was going to happen. So, we’re here and it’s a massive challenge but it’s only fitting. He’s a man that everyone loves to give zero chance. Now he’s showing his metal, his heart and his determination because there’s something there that he wants and he’s going to put it all on the line once more, we can’t wait.”
 

Oleksandr Usyk – Kiev, Ukraine – 15-0, 11 KO’s – Undisputed Cruiserweight Champion of the World – defending his belts against Tony Bellew:
 

“I’m sure it won’t be an easy fight for me and I’m really glad to come back to England, the country which gave me a chance to get some trophies already, that mean a lot in my life. I’m not thinking about Tony Bellew at this moment, I’m just concentrating on my training camp and thinking about how I will overcome all of the challenges ahead of me before the fight. I’m not a monster, I’m a white rabbit. I picked Tony Bellew because he is the man that takes the biggest challenges. He is not the usual type of fighter that will come, see how hard it is and quit. He will come to fight until the end. These are the kind of fights that the World wants to see.”
 

Tony Bellew – Liverpool, England – 30-2-1, 20 KO’s – former WBC Cruiserweight Champion of the World – challenging undisputed Cruiserweight World Champion Oleksandr Usyk:
 

“Everyone asks why. I was on my honeymoon and for one reason or another I was stood there watching Oleksandr beat-up Murat Gassiev on a mobile phone. The fight stops, and then he makes the ultimate sin and he says my name, and it didn’t take long. As soon as he said my name I knew. When I was watching the phone, I knew.
 

“The World’s going to write me off, and the more you write me off the more I want to fight. We will see. I’m going up against the monster, the man who nobody really wants to fight. The man who just dismantles fighters and beats them easily. Make no mistake, he’s looking past me already. He might say he’s not, but he’s already asking Eddie ‘who am I going to fight at Heavyweight’. He thinks I’m arrogant. It is not arrogance that he sees, for the first time in his whole career he sees a man looking back at him that believes he can win, and not a man that believes he’s just going to lose. I don’t just think or believe, I know. I’m going to find a way, I always do. You will have to nail me to the floor, you will have to nail me to the floor to keep me there.
 

“I’ve got no disrespectful things to say to him, he’s an amazing Champion. On November 10 he’s going to learn that I bring something different to everyone else. I have the one thing that he doesn’t have, and that’s a punch that can switch lights off within the blink of an eye. One wrong step or one wrong manoeuvre, and it’s over. Every time that I’m wrote off I always find a way and on November 10 it’s going to be no different.”

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USYK AND BELLEW COLLIDE IN HISTORIC UNDISPUTED CRUISERWEIGHT CLASH


 
Manchester Arena to host five-belt blockbuster on November 10
 
Undisputed Cruiserweight World Champion Oleksandr Usyk will defend his WBC, IBF, WBA, WBO and Ring Magazine belts against Tony Bellew at Manchester Arena on November 10, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and DAZN in the US.
 
Pound-for-pound star Usyk made history by outclassing Murat Gassiev to become the first Cruiserweight to hold all four recognised belts, following his sensational World Boxing Super Series win in July.
 
The 31-year-old won Olympic, World and European amateur golds before steamrolling his way to the top of the Cruiserweight division after only 15 fights, but former WBC World Champion Bellew believes he will become the first man to beat Usyk on November 10.
 
A glittering career has seen Bellew win British, Commonwealth, European and World titles, and the Liverpudlian warrior is aiming for a fairytale ending in Manchester, hinting that this could be his final battle before he retires.
 
“I’ve been preparing for this fight for a long time and I’m delighted that we’ve got the venue and the date finalised – I cannot wait to fight in the UK,” said Usyk. “I am deep into my training camp with my team, working hard and preparing for a long fight with Tony. He says he will beat me and I love his attitude, but you cannot beat-up somebody who is invisible in the ring! As always, I will be victorious on Nov 10.”
 
“This is the ultimate test for me,” said Bellew. “There is no greater test than Oleksandr Usyk, he is one of the most feared men in boxing. This is nothing new to me, everyone says that I can’t do it again. Everyone is saying that I’ll get beat-up quickly, but we’ll find out won’t we.
 
“Make no mistake, I know this is the most dangerous fight of my life but I’m also going into this with my eyes wide open, I’m not in awe of Usyk. I won’t stand and admire him and allow him to rattle off five-punch combinations on my head.
 
“He’s meeting someone who’s just as quick as him, someone that’s competed at a division lighter than him and someone that’s come across fighters much more powerful than him.
 
“I’m going into this fight with absolutely nothing to lose because the whole World thinks I’m going to get smashed. I have everything to gain and nothing to lose. On November 10 I’m going to do something that nobody has ever done before, I’m going to knockout an undisputed Cruiserweight Champion of the World.”
 
“It’s an absolute honour to promote Britain’s first ever undisputed title fight in the history of the sport,” said Eddie Hearn. “This one of the biggest and best fights in boxing with Tony Bellew daring to be great against one of the top pound-for-pounders in the sport in Oleksandr Usyk.
 
“Tony has won British, Commonwealth, European and World titles and after the two big wins against David Haye we felt it might be time to walk away, but with him constantly improving and the lure of becoming undisputed king, the temptation was too much. For Oleksandr, the plan is to finish his chapter at Cruiserweight on November 10 and then move up to Heavyweight where he will chase a fight with unified World Champion Anthony Joshua. This is going to be a thrilling fight on a huge night of boxing in Manchester – November 10 can’t come soon enough!”
 
“I cannot wait for this fight,” said Alex Krassyuk of K2 Promotions. “Two lionhearted warriors will collide for all of the Cruiserweight World titles. This is a fight that the World has been waiting for and I’m delighted to be part of history in the making.
 
“Many experts don’t give Tony a chance in this fight but he has proved many times that being an underdog does not mean being a loser. I can’t see Usyk having an easy walk in the park on November 10. This is the biggest opportunity of Tony’s career and he has nothing to lose, this makes him very dangerous.
 
“All of our focus is on Tony Bellew and November 10 but once Usyk defeats him he will be targeting the king of the Heavyweight division, Anthony Joshua.”
 
An announcement on ticket prices and on sale dates will be made in due course.

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