Theophane seeks Senchenko clash after farce in Manchester
Ashley Theophane wants to fight Ricky Hatton’s conqueror Vyacheslav Senchenko to ease the disappointment of his own last-minute cancellation on Saturday’s undercard.
The Kilburn light-welterweight had been scheduled to face Chris Truman as one of the supporting bouts to Hatton – who is also his promoter – at Manchester’s MEN Arena.
Theophane was waiting to enter the ring immediately after Hatton’s fight – when a thunderous body shot from Senchenko in the ninth round ended not only the ‘Hitman’s’ brief comeback, but the entire show.
Now the 32-year-old is hoping Hatton Promotions can offer him a chance to take on the experienced Ukrainian and help make up for his wasted trip to Manchester.
“When Ricky Hatton made the fight, there must have been a rematch clause. Now he’s retired I’ve told my people to talk to Hatton Promotions and see if we can get that fight,” Theophane told the Times.
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“I would love to fight Senchenko and I’m confident I could beat him. I really want to fight the dude that downed my promoter and get back one for the team.
“I don’t blame Ricky in any way – he’s always been cool with me. It was just bad organisation with the running of the show and the buck must stop with [Hatton Promotions’ director of boxing] Richard Poxon.
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“Ricky’s got a great stable of boxers and, even now he’s retired, he can still inspire others and help them to achieve their dreams. I want to see if we can move forward together.”
Theophane, who held the British championship for 15 months, had been due to make his first appearance in the UK since he lost the title to Darren Hamilton in May.
But he was forced to play the waiting game while super-bantamweight Scott Quigg and middleweight Martin Murray both defended their interim WBA world titles prior to Hatton’s short-lived comeback.
“I was supposed to go on just before Ricky Hatton, but the show started late because the medical team arrived late, so then I was going on just after him,” recalled the Londoner.
“I never even got to see the arena. I stayed in my dressing-room, warming up and hitting pads and just getting focused on my fight.
“It was 10 past midnight when the guy came round and said I wasn’t going to fight, because the venue’s got this curfew – but they knew that before the show.
“It’s not so much about the travelling, it’s more the fact that I’d been training hard and dropped 10lbs in the last month to make the weight. Plus we paid out of our own pockets for my trainer to fly in from New York and we don’t get refunded on that.
“I’m down because I wanted to fight and I’ve always managed to get three or four fights a year since I turned professional. But I’ve been around for nine years and nothing surprises me in the boxing world.”
Theophane, whose record remains at 32 wins, five defeats and a draw, now plans to take a break over the Christmas period and return to the ring in 2013.
One option is a meeting with Pennsylvania state welterweight champion Ray Robinson, which is pencilled in to take place in Delaware on January 4.
Meanwhile, Harlesden’s European super-middleweight champion James DeGale will be back in action in Hull a week on Saturday.
DeGale had been lining up a clash with new British title holder Kenny Anderson, but the fight fell through and the name of his new opponent is yet to be announced.