Boxing: Ricky Burns' hopes of another world title tilt shattered after split decision defeat by Dejan Zlaticanin
The Scot battled back after being floored inside the first 20 seconds
Saturday 28 June 2014
Ricky Burns was floored seconds into his comeback fight as his hopes of quickly returning to world title level were shattered by defeat by Dejan Zlaticanin.
Promoter Eddie Hearn had challenged Burns to send out a statement against the unbeaten Montenegrin but it was a far from positive signal as Zlaticanin secured a split-decision points win, although he appeared a clear winner.
Hearn had secured a WBC eliminator in the Scot's first fight since losing his WBO belt to Terence Crawford but it was the visitor who moved closer to fighting champion Omar Figueroa and left Burns facing an uncertain future.
Burns was on the floor within 30 seconds when southpaw Zlaticanin, who had knocked out 13 of his previous 18 opponents, caught him with a counter left hook.
The two-weight world champion looked shaken as he got up after the eight count and his diminutive opponent kept raining shots in.
Burns looked in danger of being stuck on the ropes a couple of times in the early rounds and Zlaticanin's left hook caused the Scot problems throughout the fight, for the vacant WBC International title.
The Coatbridge fighter managed to put together some combinations but none troubled the visitor, who generally responded with an intense flurry of punches.
Another left hook had Burns in trouble in the fifth and, just when the 31-year-old excited the Braehead Arena crowd with a decent right hook in the next round, Zlaticanin soon forced him back again.
The Montenegrin, fighting outside of the Balkans for the first time, continued to brush off Burns' replies and throw the more dangerous punches despite the Scot looking more steady as the fight progressed and winning several of the later rounds.
Zlaticanin was awarded the win by 115-113 on two scorecards with one judge, John King, giving Burns the victory by the same score, but there was no sense of injustice among the home crowd.
Hearn admitted Burns' world title hopes were over after the defeat but the boxer vowed to fight on.
He said: "He is absolutely devastated because he should be beating people like that. He is in tears.
"I said before the fight that if he was to lose it's the end of his world title ambitions. I 100 per cent stand by that.
"So I think we have to look domestically for a fight that gets him back in the mix. He has just said there that he wants to get back in the gym, it's all he ever thinks about."
Latest in Sport
Wilfried Zaha grabs rare opportunity to impress new Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal
Manchester United transfer news: Javier Hernandez close to exit as Atletico Madrid admit interest
Calum Chambers joins Arsenal: New £16m signing put through Arsenal initiation as he sings The Kooks in front of team-mates
Manchester United transfer news: Mats Hummels, Thomas Vermaelen and Daley Blind on radar as Louis van Gaal reveals he still wants to sign defender
Seydou Keita refuses Pepe handshake before throwing water bottle prior to Roma vs Real Madrid match
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
- 5 'Hello mum, this is going to be hard for you to read ...'
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Are you looking for 2 days...
£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Would you like to be part ...
£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: a small rural school, is ...
£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: They want their school to ...