Boxing: Brodie to go out on his shield

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The Independent Online

Just over 24 hours before Kostya Tszyu and Ricky Hatton take care of business, the curtain will be raised by another blistering scrap at the MEN Arena. This, too, will not be for the faint-hearted.

Just over 24 hours before Kostya Tszyu and Ricky Hatton take care of business, the curtain will be raised by another blistering scrap at the MEN Arena. This, too, will not be for the faint-hearted.

With the Hatton fight on Sky Box Office, Scott Harrison's live TV defence of his WBO featherweight title against Michael Brodie forms part of what seems to be the finale to a 10-year association between Frank Warren's Sports Network organisation and the satellite channel, who, are believed unlikely to renew the deal now that ITV are poised for an Amir Khan-inspired terrestrial comeback.

We may also be bidding adieu to Brodie, 31, for so long in the shadow of fellow Mancunian Hatton, who says he will quit boxing if he fails to win a world title at his fourth attempt.

While Hatton, perhaps out of local loyalty, tips him to win ("providing he sticks to his jab") the odds favour the Scot, who rejoices in the reputation of being the hardest man in boxing, though there have been occasions recently when it has not been confined to the ring. He is currently bound over to keep the peace and barred from every pub in East Kilbride after it took seven bouncers to get the better of him.

Harrison, 27, also needs to improve on his last performance, against Colombian Victor Polo, when he was lucky to escape with a home-town points decision.

Brodie is a warrior of the old school, but may have had too many hard knocks in a career marked by misfortune, both in the ring and out. He shipped heavy punishment in the second of his two wars with the Korean Injin Chi a year ago and one hopes if he is to make an exit, it will be with the dignity he deserves.

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