Bradford’s Junior Witter – who defends his European title against mandatory contender Andreas Kotelnik at the Nottingham Arena live on ITV2 on Saturday night - believes that he would have knocked out the Kostya Tszyu that fought Ricky Hatton last month inside five rounds.
“Lets face it, Tszyu was a shadow of what he used to be,” began Witter. “I don’t know if age caught up with him or if it was the fact that he had only boxed three rounds in two and a half years, but he definitely wasn’t right.
“He was very heavy on his feet and there was no snap in his punches.
“I would have taken that Kostya Tszyu out inside five rounds with a conclusive KO, he wouldn’t have quit on his stool from exhaustion.
“I know this will sound like sour grapes, but the truth is people are getting very carried away with Hatton’s achievement.
“On paper, it was a good win in respect of Kostya Tszyu’s name, but the man who stood in front of Hatton wasn’t the one who made that name.”
Needless to say then, Witter still firmly believes he would beat Hatton.
“There was nothing in Hatton’s performance that made me think he was any better than I already believed he was,” he added.
“He proved he had a big heart and was very fit, but I already knew that.
“Lets face it, he was completely out boxed in the middle rounds, but Tszyu ran out of gas.”
“If we fought my punches would be more accurate and more powerful than the ones Tszyu threw.
“I would do what Tszyu did through rounds three to seven, but from round one to twelve if need be, only in more devastating fashion.
“I reckon I would definitely get Hatton out of there before the Championship stretch. He wouldn’t stand up to my power.”
So, does ‘The Hitter’ – trained by the Ingles at the Wincobank gym in Sheffield – still believe he has any chance of getting his man?
“I would like to think so,” he said. “But I hold out less hope now than I used to; he is even less likely to take any risks now given the position he is in.
“I have heard some rumblings coming out of Manchester that I am not a worthy opponent, but they will need to come up with a better excuse than that.
“Is there a single guy ranked by the IBF who is more worthy?
“They have Lovemore N’Dou ranked at four and I completely dominated him in February with a fractured hand.
“I became the first guy to put him down (twice) and would have stopped him if it wasn’t for the injury.
“The only guy ranked above N’Dou currently is Juan Urango. Who is he?
“I sincerely hope Hatton’s team aren’t considering putting him in with either of these two when I am here, willing and ready to be reasonable.
“All they need to do is get in my touch with my promoter Hennessy Sports