Boxing: Pinto drops out of Hatton title fight

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The Independent Online

Ricky Hatton will not fight the unbeaten Brazilian Kelson Pinto for the World Boxing Organisation light-welterweight title on Saturday night at the MEN Arena, Manchester.

Pinto has some personal problems, some medical problems and some contractual problems and has failed to arrive in Manchester and there is now the possibility that Hatton will meet either the American Mike Stewart or an unnamed European fighter.

Rumours about Pinto's participation started last week when a press conference was postponed and escalated this week when a public work out was scrapped and the main press conference was postponed and pushed back one day.

Last night it was confirmed that Pinto, who has won 20 fights and stopped 18 of his opponents would not be stepping into the ring with Hatton in front of a crowd in excess of 14,000.

Hatton has also suffered a slight injury to his ribs and it was thought two or three days ago that if Pinto never showed Hatton would have to withdraw from such a potentially difficult fight.