Former world champion Ricky Hatton says he “can’t wait” for his return to the boxing ring in an exhibition bout against Mexican icon Marco Antonio Barrera in Manchester this summer.

Hatton, who retired from boxing in 2012, will return to the ring at the age of 43, and the former light-welterweight world champion has promised fans who attend the event at Manchester Arena on July 2 they won’t be disappointed.

“I can’t wait to be honest with you,” Hatton told Sky Sports News. “Even though we retired, we’re not dead, we’re still proud champions me and Marco.

  • Hatton announces ring return aged 43

“We’ve still got to set ourselves goals, we’ve got dreams to live. It was an easy decision to make.”

Hatton added: “It’s an exhibition but it will be competitive, because we’re both proud champions. I don’t think he’ll want to come to Manchester and have me box his ears off, and I don’t think I’d like Marco to box my ears off either.

“We all know what a great fighter Marco was, no one needs to tell me, but to actually go in there and share the ring with him and find out first hand just how good he is it’s going to be a dream come true.

“Trust me, none of the fans will leave this event disappointed.”

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Hatton has spoken openly about his struggles with his mental health since retirement and he is hoping his comeback can help anyone suffering from any similar issues.

“It was a horrific time for my friends and my family to see someone who reached the heights that I did just to crumble as a man,” Hatton said.

“But, six or seven years on, on July 2 there is going to be this exhibition, and I just hope there is one person in that audience that says, ‘look at Ricky, where he was and look at him now and the shape he is in at 43 years of age doing an exhibition – you can still turn your life around’.

“If one person comes out of that show and is better for it because they’ve seen how I’ve changed my life around, then it has been a success already hasn’t it.”

Sourse: skysports.com

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