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Saturday 21 October 2017

Legacies not on the line in Burns bout - Crolla

Anthony Crolla and Ricky Burns
Anthony Crolla and Ricky Burns

Anthony Crolla has dismissed suggestions he and Ricky Burns are risking their legacies when they fight at the Manchester Arena tonight.

Each have had fine careers in which they have won world titles at lightweight - Burns was also a champion at the weight below and above - but the loser could struggle to recover from defeat.

Crolla has lost his last two fights, both to reigning WBA champion Jorge Linares, and a third in succession at the age of 30 would be difficult to overcome. Burns also lost his most recent fight, to Julius Indongo, and at 34 and like Crolla, hopes to avoid the seventh loss of his career.

Tonight's winner could yet challenge again for world honours, and Crolla insisted: "I don't believe we're putting our legacies on the line. He wants to win another world title and so do I."

Another potential concern for Burns is that he is dropping down in weight and that few fighters have succeeded in doing so during the final stages of their careers.

Roy Jones Jnr and Oscar De La Hoya suffered one-sided defeats in such circumstances, and Burns revealed his trainer Tony Sims was unhappy at the prospect.

But he stressed: "I know that I can do it properly and winning this fight can lead to bigger things."

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