Luis Collazo, who lost his World Boxing Association welterweight title by a razor-thin decision against England's Ricky "The Hitman" Hatton on Saturday in Boston, has asked Hatton to make good on his post-fight promise to grant him a re-match. "Ricky and Team Hatton were great sportsmen before and after our fight on Saturday," Collazo said from his home in Brooklyn, N.Y. today. "I take Ricky as man of his word. He said I gave him his toughest fight ever. He admitted that I hurt him on several occasions. He said he knew the fight was close. He also said he would give me a re-match. Now he needs to make good on that promise.
"In the spirit of good sportsmanship, I think it would be only right for our second fight to take place on his home turf in Manchester. I would be honored to accept his invitation for an immediate re-match in England."
The sportsmanship between England and America was not limited to the ring combatants at the TD Banknorth Garden. Many of the visiting British journalists polled after the disputed decision honestly admitted they believed the American, Collazo, had defeated their countryman.
While the polling among all journalists showed mixed results, it was clear that more than half had Collazo winning the fight. Two highly respected American journalists scored Collazo the winner by a four-point margin of
116-112. Of those who had Hatton as the winner, few, if any, had him winning by more than a single point.
Only one of the four officials assigned to work the fight by the Massachusetts Boxing Commission had significant world championship experience.
Byron Ogelsby, Collazo's assistant trainer, may have summed it up best with his comments at the post-fight press conference.
"Ricky Hatton was exposed tonight," Ogelsby said. "Until he redeems himself in a re-match with Luis Collazo, he has no business talking about fights with Floyd Mayweather Jr. or any of the others (welterweight elites)."