pacquiaohatton Pacquiao Hatton in the News Hatton says Pacquiao fight biggest of them all

British star Ricky Hatton said his upcoming bout with Manny Pacquiao is the biggest fight of his career, even more massive than his tussle with two former pound-for-pound greats.

Hatton’s trek to superstardom started with a fight with then junior welterweight champion Kostya Tszyu in 2004. The Australia-based Tszyu was then ranked high in the pound-for-pound rankings, making Hatton a heavy underdog in their match.

“He [Tszyu] was an animal, yes. And, I mean, he was a massive puncher. He was very physically strong. And nobody gave me a prayer of winning that fight. Similar is that nobody is giving me a prayer to win this fight [against Pacquiao],” Hatton (45-1, 32 KOs) said in a conference call to promote “The Battle of East and West.”

Hatton went on beat Tszyu when the latter quit on his stool after 11 grueling rounds. The victory, which was for Tszyu’s IBF junior welterweight title, announced Hatton’s arrival to mainstream boxing and remains to many boxing observers as his most significant win.

Pacquiao hits 140 lbs a week before fight

WHILE WINDING DOWN his training on Saturday (Sunday in Manila), Manny Pacquiao took off his sweaty red shirt to flaunt his well-chiseled body and bulging muscles.

Then, while doing abdominal strengthening exercises, he blurted out: “Am I small at 140?”

Pacquiao actually doesn’t look like somebody who can readily be swept aside by a bigger guy like Ricky Hatton.

Pacquiao, in fact, overpowered sparring partners Alisher Rahimov and David Rodela in five rounds with his dazzling speed.

As it turned out, Pacquiao had already made the 140-pound limit for his light welterweight clash with Hatton a week before the megabuck bout at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

“He didn’t even need to diet,” assistant trainer Nonoy Neri said in Filipino. “Hard work in training kept his weight in check.”

Hatton targeting Pacquiao finale

Ricky Hatton says he will fight twice more before retiring from the sport.

Hatton will fight New Yorker Paulie Malignaggi later this year in Las Vegas for the IBF light-welterweight title.

The Manchester boxer, 29, then plans to end his career against Filipino great Manny Pacquiao or Mexican Oscar de la Hoya at Wembley next year.

"I don’t want to go on forever and would have done everything I dreamed off, so two more fights and then I think I’m done," Hatton told BBC Sport.

Hatton confirmed that his fight against American Malignaggi would be in Las Vegas, the scene of his only defeat, against Floyd Mayweather in December.

Watch Pacquiao vs. Hatton live online for free!