18.12.07 Hatton's letter to his fans
Dear M.E.N. readers,
I moved up in weight to challenge the man quite rightly regarded as the best pound for pound fighter in the world Floyd Mayweather Junior.
This was the third time this year that I have fought in Las Vegas and two years since I last fought in England. Each fight has seen more and more Brits travel across the Atlantic for what can only described as an amazing journey and the journey is still not over.
For the fight 30,000 people invaded the city of Las Vegas, 7,000 fans turned up inside the arena for the weigh in and as many again were unable to gain entry. A capacity crowd of 16,000 watched the fight live, and thousands watched on closed circuit television screens throughout Las Vegas.
Every where I went in Las Vegas I saw Brits laughing and joking in their “Fatty’s gonna get you T shirts”. I was stopped in the street by people who just wanted to wish me well and offer their support both British and American alike. It even rained on the day of the weigh in and with so many Brits just for a moment it felt like I was back home in Manchester.
The fight did not go the way I had hoped and planned for and I was stopped in the 10th round. Throughout the fight the crowd could be heard singing there’s only one Ricky Hatton, even in defeat their support did not waver. Amazing.
Following the fight, Floyd put his arms around me and we shared some kind words and a mutual respect that only boxing can bring. It was nice of Floyd to say that I had given him his toughest fight and that the British fans made it a memorable night to remember.
It’s not easy losing when you set your goals so high but throughout my journey one thing has been the consistent, the support of my fans. Given the choice of all the belts in the world or the support of the fans, the fans support will always come first. I can say with all honesty that I have the best fans in the world.
This Christmas I will spend time with my family and I will take a long deserved holiday before going back into the gym in the New Year.
I have no doubt that I will be back in the ring as I am still the undisputed Light welterweight World champion. I have spoken with my Dad and we both agree that the time is right and we would like to repay the fans loyalty with a fight in this country.
And so at this time of year I would like to wish you and your families a Happy Christmas God bless you all and I will look forward to seeing you in the New Year. Thank you so much for your support.