Hatton -is -back -diary

A record-breaking 18,000 tickets were sold for the hotly anticipated Ricky Hatton comeback bout within 48 hours of them going on sale.

In an emphatic display of Hatton's popularity amongst boxing fans, 18,000 of the 19,000 tickets for the fight at the Manchester Arena on November 24 have been snapped up, despite his opponent having yet to be announced.

The demand for tickets has surpassed all previous boxing ticket sales records for the venue, including bouts featuring such fighters as David Haye and Mike Tyson.

Hatton's return to the ring, which takes places over three years after his last professional fight against Manny Pacquiao, has generated huge interest from around the globe and is destined to be one of the most talked about fights of 2012.

And the former two-weight world champion admits he is humbled by the backing of his fans and insists he will repay them in kind with a performance to remember.

Hatton said: "It's incredible how quickly the tickets have been selling and I want to say a huge thanks to everyone who has supported my return to the ring, whether that's by buying tickets or by the lovely messages of support I've received.

"For so many people, to come out and support me like this, especially in these hard financial times, is absolutely amazing and I'm truly humbled.

"We all need someone to believe in and hopefully I can be that person."

Hatton has been busy in the gym with his new trainer Bob Shannon and the 33-year-old believes the tough training schedule is already reaping its rewards.

"I'm feeling great and although there is a long road to go with the training, I couldn't be happier with where I am," added Hatton.

"When I announced my comeback last week I told everyone I had no doubts that I will once again become world champion and from what I've been working on in the gym and how I'm feeling, my belief has only got stronger."

19/09/2012 23:25:55