As expected, it was announced today that Kell Brook and Matthew Hatton will meet at the Motorpoint Arena in Sheffield, England on March 17. “This is a fight I’ve wanted for a long time and to get it at the Sheffield Arena means the world to me,” said Brook, 25. “When I first sat down with Eddie, he told me that his vision was a sell-out night at Sheffield Arena and now we’re here. It is a competitive division and we’re both trying to achieve the same goal, so I know that by putting him out of the equation, it gives me a clearer run at the title. I want people to stand up and take notice of me and these are the kind of nights that makes that happen.
“We’ve been looking at fights here and in the US but this is the one that gives me the buzz. I know I’m comfortably the best Welterweight in Britain and I’m going to put in a devastating performance on March 17 to show the World just that.”
The fight represents an impressive landmark for Hatton, who will fight for the 50th time as a pro when he faces Brook. The Manchester man has held the European and Commonwealth Welterweight titles and put in a brave performance against Saul Alvarez in Anaheim last March when they tussled for the vacant WBC Light Middleweight title.
The 30 year-old returned to Welterweight action in August, winning the vacant IBF International title in Blackpool against Andrei Abramenka and with almost twice the number of fights under his belt, Hatton believes his experience of big fight nights will give him the edge in Sheffield.
“This is a massive night and a massive fight but it’s nothing new to me,” said Hatton. “It’s my 50th contest and I’m very proud of that, so I want it to be a landmark and Kell is in the way of that, I don’t want my 50th fight to be a loss. I’ve boxed class opposition in big arenas all over the world so experience will play a part in this fight. Fighting Kell in Sheffield isn’t something that’s going to keep me awake and it’s only an hour down the road so I’ll have good support there on the night.
“It has irritated me a little bit that people regard Kell as the number one in Britain – I’ve been European champion and was undefeated at that level, it’s like being told you are not even the best at School even though you are the best in Europe!
“So finally one of us is going to be able to say that they are number one – people tell me that he is number one and I’m sure he gets people telling him that I am number one, so on March 17 we’ll find out for sure.”
Brook’s promoter Eddie Hearn added: “This fight has taken it’s time to arrive but I couldn’t be happier that we have finally got it on. I’ve wanted this fight since we signed Kell, and I remember Ray Hatton telling me early last year to let this fight grow and he was right. It’s perfect timing for both fighters and a massive night for British boxing. I want to bring the glory days back to British boxing and you need fights and events that will capture the public’s imagination – this is just the start of what we want to do in 2012 and we’re going to get Sheffield jumping on March 17.”
Hearn also revealed that British Middleweight star Darren Barker is likely to make his first appearance since fighting Sergio Martinez in October as the chief support on the night, and that Lee Purdy will face Adnan Amar for the English Welterweight title. Other names for the show will be confirmed in the next week.
Tickets for Kell Brook vs. Matthew Hatton plus full championship undercard go on sale at 2pm on Wednesday 11 January.