Ricky Burns defends his WBO Lightweight title against 32-year old Mexican- American contender Raymundo Beltran at the Scottish Exhibition Centre in Glasgow on 7th September as he looks to extend his 21 fight, 6 year unbeaten streak.
Whilst his last defence ultimately ended in a victory Burn’s was out-boxed and out classed in the opening six rounds of the nine that it lasted against then unbeaten Puerto-Rican, Jose Gonzalez. Whilst some say he can be deemed as fortunate that his opponent quit on his stool citing a wrist injury, there was a general consensus amongst the viewing public and boxing experts that Ricky’s sheer willpower and desire in the last 3 rounds took Gonzalez to a place he hadn’t been before and seemingly didn’t want to go. Despite the credit he rightfully received for his show of heart and determination I think the way in which he was dominated early on will be niggling away at him and he will put pressure upon himself to impress more convincingly with his boxing skill and stamp an authority on the bout with his jab.
Beltran 28W-6L (17KO) is a tough and compact fighter and if given the time to engineer his openings can be a powerful finisher; although his last knockout victory was back in 2011. He will attempt to force the pace of the fight on the front foot and look to get on the inside with his shorter reach and work the body. He will want to get his man against the ropes and in at close quarters to be effective. Odds of 3/1 with Skybet show you that Beltran is a serious challenger and there is of course the possibility that Burns will overlook his opponent as his team think about a potential unification match with Miguel Vazquez. Another factor is the birth of Burns first child which is expected around fight time and could prove to be a distraction.
Ricky Burns will be looking to utilise his natural 2 inch height and reach advantages to keep Beltran at bay and you would expect him to be boxing on the outside at range, peppering his opponent with fast, straight and accurate combinations. Although he is not known for being a big puncher with only a 28.95% Knockout ratio he conditions himself extremely well and looks naturally strong in the weight division. If he performs to his best he is capable of stopping his man in the mid to late stages. Skybet-4/1 for Ricky Burns to win in Rounds 7-12 is a good value bet if you don’t fancy the best outright odds of 2/7 for Burns with Betfred.