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“I trained Ryan for a short while at the start of his career,” said Hatton, who has battled depression since he hung up his gloves.

“But I wasn’t the trainer I am today.

“I was having a lot of problems at the time, I wasn’t in a good place at all, and Ryan felt the training was better elsewhere.

“I understand why he left. There are no hard feelings.

“The Ricky Hatton of today is in a miles better place than the Ricky Hatton back then.

“I’m a better trainer and the gym is buzzing. I’ve got fighters like Zhanat, (English super-middleweight champion) Darryll Williams and (unbeaten heavyweight) Nathan Gorman in the gym.”

Burnett and Zhakiyanov sparred several times at Hatton’s gym and he said: “Most times they sparred, Ryan edged it and with his boxing ability you would expect him to.

“But when you take the head guards and the big gloves off and look at the fight, Zhanat has beaten the better men.

“Zhanat has been in the trenches and Ryan hasn’t, but he is tougher than he looks.

“Ryan looks like a choirboy, but he’s tough.”


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