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Ricky Hatton offers Tony Bellew some Christmas cheer


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Popular Commonwealth light-heavyweight champion (and regular BoxRec poster) Tony Bellew has been taking a bit of stick lately - both in and out of the ring.


A typically confident Scouser, 'Bomber' (15-0) was not shy of predicting the demise of his two previous challengers, Bob Ajisafe and Ovill McKenzie, only to find himself on the floor against both men.


Although he prevailed in the contests (points and eighth round stoppage respectively) Bellew struggled badly against raw novice Ajisafe and was dropped in the fourth; McKenzie had him over in round one and then again in round two.


The one thing you can guarantee about fora is that there's always someone willing to point out your inadequacies. Bomber has had to take more than a few electronic brickbats over the last few months. Plenty of them have merit - it isn't difficult to make a case that the Bellew Express has been derailed.


One man who feels Bellew's recent trials might work in his favour is former two-weight world champion turned promoter, Ricky Hatton.


"Tony is a lovely kid who is showing plenty of promise," said Hatton. "He has cut it fine a little bit in his last couple of fights. He has not sailed through it but when I was coming through I had fights like that.


"If when you are coming through every fight is far too comfortable then you are not really learning anything. If you go out there each time and knock someone out in one or two rounds then it is going to be a big shock to system when you do come up against some one tough.


"He has had a few tricky moments but I had moments like that. Eamonn Magee knocked me on my backside, I had cuts and was given one round to win fights – you need to experience stuff like that to stand you in good stead for the big fights that are ahead.


"He is going to be at championship level soon and, despite a few hairy moments, he is probably ticking more boxes than most and when the big fights come he will be more ready than most."



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