I got a bit of a shock, but I want to get to the top – Hatton

, I got a bit of a shock, but I want to get to the top – Hatton, The Evepost BBC News
Campbell Hatton admits debut was ‘bit of a shock’
Anthony Joshua v Oleksandr Usyk
Venue: Tottenham Hotspur Stadium Date: Saturday, 25 September
Coverage: Commentary on BBC Radio 5 Live; live text coverage on the BBC Sport website & app

Campbell Hatton believes he has the blueprint to become a world champion, but says he has been surprised by how hard it is being a professional boxer.

The 20-year-old is the son of two-weight world champion Ricky Hatton and is trained by his uncle and former world-title challenger Matthew Hatton.

Campbell, who fights Uruguay’s Sonni Martinez on Saturday, made his debut in March and told BBC Sport he was amazed how nervous he was on fight night.

“I got a bit of a shock,” he said.

“The nerves caught up with me all at once on the night. I was half-prepared for it because I had the people round me like my dad and Matthew, who had been there and they warned me.

“It was the ring walk. I thought I was calm. I was very nervous. When I compared it to my second fight, it was night and day.”

Super-featherweight Hatton’s next bout – his fourth as a pro – is another high-pressure affair as he prepares to fight on the undercard of Anthony Joshua’s heavyweight showdown with Oleksandr Usyk.

Some 60,000 fans are expected at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, but Hatton is trying to take it all in his stride.

“I don’t think the pressure will ever top [my debut],” he said.

Watching Hatton fight evokes memories of his father, such is their likeness and their fondness for body shots.

“Left hook to the body – that’s always been really natural,” he said. “I want to be an exciting fighter. I don’t want to come away from the style I’ve got.

“I’m naturally very aggressive in the ring. It’s a style fans will enjoy and it never makes a dull fight.

“My dad was so good offensively and Matthew was so good defensively. I can’t go wrong if I mix the two.”

, I got a bit of a shock, but I want to get to the top – Hatton, The Evepost BBC News

Boxing is certainly in Hatton’s blood – he has been in a gym twice a day since he was 14 – but he acknowledges everything has been “a little hit harder” since he turned professional.

“The opponents, even though I probably fought better opposition in the amateurs – like the journeymen at this level, they’re just that little bit tougher than you’d expect,” he said.

“My dad has done amazing for himself through boxing and I can do the same for me and my kids. That’s the plan.”

Hatton’s fight with Martinez – a 29-year-old with a 2-4 pro record – will be just behind world champion Lawrence Okolie on the undercard on Saturday.

His long-term plan is to headline a stadium fight in his home city – perhaps at Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium.

But his only goal on Saturday is to improve on his last performance.

“I want to take one thing at a time,” he said. “There’s enough pressure on me as there is. It’s not going to happen overnight.”

Hatton said Conor Benn, whose father Nigel was also a two-weight world champion like Ricky, is the example he wants to follow. Benn is now 19-0 and on the path to a world-title fight after beginning his career under intense pressure to emulate his father.

“He’s like the perfect blueprint for how my career needs to go,” said Hatton.

“He’s in a similar position to me. There is a lot of pressure on him. He was quite raw and he didn’t have a massive amateur background.

“He was active and put the work in the gym. I need to do the same. There’s no way my dad and Matthew will let me get too big for my boots.

“There’s no secret to how you get to the top. That’s what I’m going to do.”

, I got a bit of a shock, but I want to get to the top – Hatton, The Evepost BBC News , I got a bit of a shock, but I want to get to the top – Hatton, The Evepost BBC News