Matthew Hatton Feature

Did you know Hatton’s fighting for the IBO title next month? No? Well before you go running to the internet to try and figure out how the famous Ricky ‘Hitman’ Hatton could have such a massive fight without you even realising, it isn’t actually Ricky at all, it’s his not so little, little brother. Matthew.

Since he was born in Stockport back in 1981, ‘Magic’ Matthew Hatton has done everything he can to try and steal some of the limelight from his big brother. He’s the only Hatton who supports the red half of Manchester for a start.

But on March 2nd, after years of fighting on Ricky’s undercard, Matthew will have his biggest opportunity to claim the spotlight once and for all. In a match which some are calling the biggest fight in South Africa for a dozen years, he takes on IBO Welterweight champion Chris Van Heerden, hoping to add another massive win to his already illustrious career.

The man who claims to have “had more fights than John Wayne” holds a record of 43 wins, six losses and two draws since turning professional in 2000, and has held inter-continental, international, and European welterweight titles, proving that he’s no slouch in the ring. And if you ask him, he’ll even tell you that half of those losses were greatly unjustified.

Many feel that Matthew is a massive underdog travelling to South Africa, after suffering some crushing recent defeats, such as Kell Brook in Sheffield. But apart from a questionable cut stoppage at the start of his career, ‘Magic’ has never been stopped, and feels he is 100 per cent ready for the challenge.
“I do feel physically and mentally that I’m maybe at my peak. I didn’t have a great night there but let’s see what the future holds. You have your ups and your downs, and I do think your downs really make you stronger.”

As much as Matthew wants to adopt some of his brother’s glory, he acknowledges the massive impact ‘The Hitman’ has had on his lengthy career. “Me and Ricky were always sports mad. Boxing is just something that I’ve always been around.”

Matthew began his boxing career as an amateur at the tender age of 12, fighting 22 times before turning pro seven years later, something which he openly regrets. “Perhaps, in hindsight, I should have stayed an amateur a little bit longer. But I think it was seeing Ricky, and how well he was doing professionally, it made me want to quickly turn pro.”

His first professional fight took place in September 2000, ending in victory over fellow pro-debutant David White, and Matthew remembers it like it was yesterday. “The thing I remember most from that night, is I remember the nerves were unbelievable, I always feel sorry now for young lads making their debuts because the nerves are terrible, once you’ve got that first one out the way it does become easier.”

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