Like a clock turning back time, Ricky Hatton has recalled his fighting spirit to lose a whopping two stone in less than eight weeks as he prepares for a return to the ring.
On July 2, the former IBF light heavyweight champion will touch gloves with legendary Mexican Marco Antonio Barrera in an eight-round exhibition bout, his first contest in nearly a decade.
An athlete known for his fluctuating appearance between fights, Hatton would often shed the pounds in short time after enjoying a lavish lifestyle during his time off.
But since his retirement in 2012, Hatton has been easily discerned for his love of booze and has often been sighted at his local pub as the pounds gradually increased.
After climbing to a stodgy weight of 14 stone six, the 43-year-old has demonstrated his eye of the tiger and shredded down to 12 stone two, all within two months.
He highlighted former stars returning to the ring in recent years as inspiration for a ‘complete life change.’
Speaking to the Telegraph, he said: “When I told people I’m doing the exhibition bout in July, which came about as an idea after I saw Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr fight in a similar bout in lockdown, they said ‘absolutely no chance, you’re never out of the pub, look at the size of you, you’ll never lose that.’
“I was 14 [stone] six and I’m 12 two now, I’ve lost that in seven weeks which is incredible.
“I don’t think I did that when I was fighting, but I was always good at losing the weight.”
Proving the doubters wrong has been a lifelong task for Hatton and has indeed been the motivation behind returning to the ring in the best shape possible.
“If you tell Ricky Hatton I can’t do something I’ll do it. It’s about exercise and diet, knowing to eat the right things, when to eat the right things.”
The fantastic journey has been fuelled by switching pints and takeaways for a meal-prepped diet, with protein shakes and low carb dinners now the incentive for The Hitman.
Hatton retired from professional boxing as a four-time world champion, with a commendable record of 45-3, and going 43-0 before a floundering end to his career.
It’s likely that Tyson Fury’s phenomenal return to action following a similar, albeit more severe narrative, will have evoked a response from The Hitman and shown him he can indeed prove the doubters wrong.