Boxing: Lockett has puncher's chance of world titles

In a week when David Haye brought a new dimension to self-promotion while Ricky Hatton plumbed new depths of self-delusion, the Hayemaker and the Hitman highlighted the vicissitudes of big-time boxing.

Haye, who aspires to be heavyweight champion of the world, confirmed that he is to act as his own impresario, whereas Hatton, whose winning performance against the valiant Juan Lazcano left him looking more like Rocky than Ricky, confirmed that he may be his own worst enemy.

Haye and Hatton are two of boxing's most engaging characters, able to articulate with more than just their fists. Gary Lockett is another of that breed. In Atlantic City next Saturday, Lockett will attempt to replenish the fast-diminishing stock of British world champions. To do so he will need Haye's punch and Hatton's gumption.

His opponent, the unbeaten Kelly Pavlik, from Ohio, is arguably the hardest puncher, pound for pound, around today. He makes the first defence of his WBC and WBO middleweight titles against the 31-year-old Welshman, having stopped or KO'd 29 of his 33 victims.

Pavlik, 26, is marked up at10-1 on to give similarly short shrift to Lockett, whose own record of 30 wins with 21 KO's and just one defeat, five years ago, looks reasonable enough on paper to give him the proverbial puncher's chance. Like him, Pavlik has been on the floor but gets up to win. As Lockett says: "This fight could be all about who gets hit on the chin first.

"I know no one gives me a snowball's chance in hell, thinking I'm going to get hammered. But I've come up the hard way, fighting in small halls for little money. I'm hungry and dangerous. Pavlik's good but he's no Mayweather. He doesn't have his all-round game. I've got a gameplan and a good chin."

Lockett takes his inspiration from his stablemate Joe Calzaghe, and also from Lloyd Honeyghan, who in the same New Jersey gambling citadel 22 years ago registered the biggest upset on US soil by a British fighter when he beat the seemingly invincible world welterweight champion Don Curry.

"Honeyghan was given no chance, but he ripped Curry to shreds," said Lockett. "I've watched that performance on video and it showed me the attitude I'm going to need todo the same." Setanta, who have added Haye to their burgeoning pugilistic portfolio, gamble that Lockett can land his own haymaker, screening the fight live at 1am on Sunday.

Like Haye, Lockett has everything to fight for, but Hatton's refusal to recognise that soon he may have nothing left to fight with should be of concern to all who admire him.

Fortunately Hatton's next scheduled opponent, Paul Malig-naggi, is not the most devastating hitter. Even so, after the Homecoming that became a Happening, Hatton should make this date the Last Hurrah.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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

Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application Developer

£30000 - £40000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application ...

Recruitment Genius: Digital Account Executive

£18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...

Recruitment Genius: Service Engineers - Doncaster / Hull

£27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Domestic Service Only Engineers are requ...

Recruitment Genius: Employability / Recruitment Adviser

£23600 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Employability Service withi...

Day In a Page

Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...