Boxing: Hatton and rival pulled apart after hotel scuffle

Ricky Hatton had to be pulled apart from his rival Floyd Mayweather in a post-press conference commotion at the MGM Grand Garden here yesterday ahead of Saturday's showdown with WBC world welterweight champion.

Hatton and Mayweather engaged in a shoving match during the obligatory head-to-head which ended with the "Hit Man" dispensing with his usual cheery persona and aiming a throat-slitting gesture at the champion.

After the pair were pulled apart Hatton revealed: "He leaned on me a little bit I just leaned back on him and he spat his dummy out. He isn't pushing me back.

"There's a time for me to laugh and joke and be my usual sarcastic self but the fight's two days away now and I've done my laughing and joking. When I leaned back on him he said 'don't touch me, don't touch me'. I gave him a little bit of the 'you're dead' gesture then I smiled at him. If he's annoyed at that wait till the bell rings."

Hatton is convinced he has managed to get under the skin of a fighter who clearly revels in his enormous self-confidence and seemed visibly perturbed by his rival's antics.

"I think Floyd depends on that confidence and that's why he did it. I think it'll hurt him more than me. I'll go away and forget about it now but I think he might be seething."

Hatton has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from British fans here ahead of Saturday's fight.

"Absolutely fantastic," said Hatton of the welcome he received from more than 1,000 fans packing the lobby of the hotel and casino. "When you think, there's only some of them here at the minute, so to give the support like they did, I found it amazing."

Up to 10,000 fans are expected to make the trip from the UK to Las Vegas, far in excess of the 4,000 seats allocated to Hatton supporters. Tickets for the fight had sold out within 30 minutes, although Internet re-sale sites were offering ringside seats for almost $13,000.

Several British fans in the hotel lobby said they had no tickets but no intention of paying such inflated prices. They were planning to attend one of the numerous closed-circuit showings along the Las Vegas Strip, but had travelled largely for the atmosphere. That was evident when the throng cheered Hatton's arrival and, half an hour later, booed and jeered the appearance of Mayweather.

Hatton has made a pact with his family to retire from boxing after he turns 30 next year, his mother revealed yesterday.

The undefeated fighter is preparing for the biggest fight of his career. There has been talk of a Wembley bout with Oscar De La Hoya should Hatton upset the odds this weekend.

It has been reported that his trainer Billy Graham is keen for Hatton to retire shortly after turning 30 years of age and his mother, Carol, wants her son to hang up his gloves before he gets "hurt".

"It's the last lap of his career now. He's 30 next year and we all made a pact," she told BBC Radio Five Live. "Two or three more fights. Because, after 30, your reflexes slow down. You've got more chance of getting hurt. He doesn't need the money now.

"How many boxers do you know who come back for the money and unfortunately terrible things happen? You don't get paid overtime not in boxing, do you? So, get your money, get in there, get it done as quick as you can and let's all go home and have a party."

As for Hatton, he said. "Sometimes as a fight gets nearer doubt comes in. It's having the opposite effect on me."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Tradewind Recruitment: SEN Teacher

Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: SEN Teacher We have a fantastic special n...

Tradewind Recruitment: History Teacher

Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: My client is an 11-18 all ability co-educat...

Tradewind Recruitment: Year 6 Teacher

£100 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Year 6 Teacher Birmingham Jan 2015...

Recruitment Genius: Transport Administrator / Planner

£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee