RICKY HATTON’S old sparring partner has mocked Sheffield fighter Adam Etches saying: “You won’t knock me out.”
Tough Belarusian Andrei Abramenka says he is far from intimidated at the thoughts of squaring up with the 22-year-old Sheffield KO specialist nicknamed ‘The Birley Bomber’ on April 13.
“Sure Etches can punch, I’d be stupid to say he couldn’t” says Abramenka, 25.
“Let’s not lie to ourselves, most top fighters can punch and I hear that Etches can really bang, but I’ve never been stopped by anyone.
“And I tell you this, Etches won’t be the first” says the boxer with a sound 18-2-2 record.
“I have boxed at a high level even whilst I was hurting to make the weight. Now, I feel very strong and settled as a middleweight” he added.
“I was the main sparring partner for Ricky Hatton in his comeback and I’ve fought many good European standard opponents (including Matthew Hatton.) Can you really tell me that Etches is of that standard? No way.
“I was there when he stopped Roman Dzhuman in two rounds in Manchester. In fairness, that was a very good result. Only the best stop Dzhuman. Maybe though, Roman had a bad night.”
Asked about the effect of the expected sell out crowd at Ponds Forge Abramenka replied “I am very experienced now.
“I hear Etches and another boy on the show (Scott Jenkins) are very popular in Sheffield and that they sell many tickets.
“Yet Etches can have 5,000 fans there and maybe all his friends can get in the ring before the fight.
“But trust me, when the bell rings all his friends will have left and it will just be me and him.
“I refuse to make silly predictions. But I can tell you certainly that winning the IBF Junior title will give me a chance to improve my life. Do you think I will not do everything to win? I will be victorious in Sheffield.
“Like all ‘Bomber planes’, they can be shot down..”
Also on the card is popular lightweight Jenkins, Sam O’Maison, Atif Shafiq, Leigh Wood, Josh McLaren and Chesterfield’s Kris Davey.