Anthony Crolla open to Ricky Burns rematch in Glasgow

By Keir MurrayBBC Scotland at Manchester Arena
Anthony Crolla and Ricky Burns embarce after the fight
Crolla (right) is receptive to the idea of a Burns rematch

Anthony Crolla is open to a rematch with Ricky Burns in Glasgow in the spring but he and promoter Eddie Hearn will first consider their options.

The 30-year-old beat Scotland's Burns on points in the Manchester Arena on Saturday to improve his prospects of returning to the world title stage.

"I'm very proud of where I'm from but when Flower of Scotland plays in the Hydro [in Glasgow] I find it hard not to sing along," said the Mancunian.

"I've got no problem going there."

Having lost to Venezuela's Jorge Linares on points in two bruising encounters for the WBA lightweight title, Crolla clinched the win his career needed by outpointing the former three-weight world champion Burns in a close, hard-fought bout in front of 12,000 fans.

"It was good to be involved in a good fight with a top guy like Ricky," said Crolla, whose records stands at 32 wins, six defeats and three draws.

"It was a great night for me. I thought I had definitely done enough but it was a tough fight.

'I would love to fight in Glasgow'

"We'll go away and assess things. My aim is to win back another world title and whoever gets me there the fastest, I'll happily take it.

"I'll have a little break with the family and I'll get this swollen nose down. He hit me with a great uppercut."

Burns, 34, was disappointed with the 116-113, 117-112, 116-114 verdict as he tried to recover from losing his super-lightweight unification bout with Namibia's Julius Indongo at Glasgow's Hydro in April.

At the post-fight media conference attended by both boxers, Burns, when asked if he was keen on a rematch, replied: "Yeah, 100%.

"We [he and trainer Tony Sims] agreed to everything that they wanted - Manchester, moving down to lightweight - so it would only be fair to get it back to the Hydro, staying at lightweight.

"I showed that if I diet properly I can do lightweight. That is my best weight to fight at. If they are up for it, let's do it.

"I knew some of the rounds were close but I thought I had done enough to get the nod. I wasn't taking that many clean shots and I was catching Anthony throughout the rounds.

"I've definitely got another few big fights left in me, another few years. The next fight is number 50. I'll hit 60 or 70!"

Ricky Burns
Ricky Burns: "I would rather stay at lightweight"

Burns' preference to remain at 135lb would appear to rule out a fight against fellow Scot Josh Taylor, who operates at 140lb in the super-lightweight division.

On that match-up, the Coatbridge fighter, with 41 wins, seven losses and a draw, said: "Money talks. I would rather stay at lightweight but if we did get offered big, big money to move back up then who knows?

"I would love to do this fight again back in Glasgow."

Crolla and Burns share the same promoter in Matchroom's Hearn, who views a rematch as "an obvious fight".

"I think Scotland would come out in their numbers. We've got to make it very lucrative to both," Hearn said.

"World titles are very important but so are the big fights. He's not desperate to fight for the world lightweight belt. We've got to make sure that every fight counts.

"I will get the numbers for the offers and I will present them to Joe [Gallagher, trainer] and Anthony. They will make the decision. It's not a game; you take the right fights for the right financial terms.

"They are in the final stages of their careers and it's our job to make sure they get what they deserve, which is as much money as possible.

"If Ricky and Anthony like the money for a rematch, it happens every day of the week.

"But we've got Luke Campbell in the mix, Terry Flanagan, Robert Easter."