Boxing

Ricky Burns must Abandon the rematch with Raymundo Beltran

Burns takes a barrage of punishment from Beltran in their World Title fight in Glasgow (©GettyImages)
Burns takes a barrage of punishment from Beltran in their World Title fight in Glasgow (©GettyImages).

Despite the rhetoric coming from Eddie Hearn - Matchroom supremo and promoter of Ricky Burns - that the World Champion ‘may never box again’ after suffering a broken jaw, it now appears that he will return to the ring. 

This is obviously fantastic news for the lion-hearted fighter and his fervent fan following.

What may not be so great, however, are the early reports that Burns and his camp seem intent on giving Beltran a rematch in his very next fight - immediately after he recovers from the serious jaw injury.

The olive branch seemingly being thrown to Beltran is, on the one hand, due to the tremendous sportsmanship of Burns, and on the other to the embarrassment of his camp, who clearly feel there is credence in the conviction that the challenger was indeed ‘robbed’ of a World Championship.

This is, of course, perfectly true, as even the most partisan of observers would openly acknowledge that Beltran deserved to go home as a champion of the world after turning in such a confident and composed performance in what was undoubtedly the biggest fight of his life.

For Beltran’s hard work and sacrifice to end in tears rather than the triumph his performance richly deserved is tantamount to a tale of Shakespearean tragedy.

And as much as the cruel nature of the conclusion obviously deeply affected the heartbroken Beltran, it is clear that he has been the doomed protagonist in this kind of narrative many times before in his career.

The look of utter desolation etched upon the proud warriors face when he addressed the TV cameras in his dressing room after the bout was enough to bring a tear to a glass eye.

And this is why, in a sport where integrity, equality and fairness are almost always an afterthought of everyone intimately involved, the compassion shown to the plight of Beltran by Burn’s inner circle has helped restore faith in the often tainted sport.

But the chorus of approval from fans who also agree that a rematch is the ‘moral’ course of action to take will doubtless be balanced by the manic chants from the majority of boxing observers who will say Burn’s is far too brave for his own good.

So for some, the decision to grant Beltran another shot at his title would be an act of heroism.
For others, it would simply be career suicide.

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Topics:
Ricky Burns
Boxing

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