Former world champion Ricky Hatton announced he will retire from boxing again after losing his comeback fight in a ninth-round stoppage at the Manchester Arena.
The 34-year-old from Hyde left the ring in tears after a vicious left-hook body shot from Ukraine’s Vyacheslav Senchenko put Hatton on the canvas.
Hatton made a good start to the fight, winning three of the first four rounds, but ring-rust and tiredness set in, and he faces up to life without boxing again.
“I needed one more fight to see if I had still got it – and I haven’t,” he said.
“I couldn’t have done any better.
“A fighter knows and I know it isn’t there anymore. I have got to be a man and say it is the end of Ricky Hatton.”
Senchenko, with only one career defeat, stoked up the crowd by entering the ring in a Manchester United shirt and was delighted to beat Hatton in his home town.
Hatton, however, insists he is happy with his efforts, meaning he can confront the personal demons which have haunted him since his last defeat to Manny Pacquiao in 2009.
“I got in the best shape I possibly could but if I hadn’t been hit with that body shot I would have just scraped over the line,” he admitted.
“It’s too many hard fights, I’ve burned the candle at both ends, I’ve put my body through the mire in and out of the ring.
“I’m a happy man tonight. I don’t feel like putting a knife to my wrists.
“I have got the answers I needed. I can look at myself in the mirror and tell myself I did my best.”