Tough and rough Ricky "hitman" Hatton is expected to apply some unconventional tactics in his upcoming match with Manny "pacman" Pacquiao. It is almost certain that he will resort to doing a lot of clinching and possibly some occasional headbutts and low blows.
However, I don't think that he will reach the point of becoming so desperate that he would be looking for opportunities to deliberately employ his dirty tactics for the sake of victory.
Roughing up the opponent is part of the game of boxing even in the elite level. There will be illegal blows every now and then but professional boxers belonging to the "A" class know their limits with regards to employing these unconventional weapons. They usually use these techniques for intimidation purposes only.
Exception to the rule would be "iron" Mike Tyson who didn't have second thoughts on biting Evander Holyfield's ears off.
The Hitman knows what is on the line here aside from his title. His reputation and his country's reputation is also at stake. I strongly believe that he would not do anything that would shame his beloved England.
How would boxing fans all over the world react if Hatton defeats Pacquiao because of a low blow that was not seen by the referee? Obviously they would feel cheated themselves because the fight was won not by superior boxing skills but by dirty tactics.
The legions of Pacquiao worshippers will be enraged and the millions of Hatton supporters will be embarrassed by what their "idol" has done.
The hitman will lose his luster if this kind of situation happens and this might cost him future mega fights.
Remember, Shane Mosley, Miguel Cotto, Juan Manuel Marquez, Juan Diaz and Nate Campbell are all awaiting the results of this match. If Hatton wins only because of dirty tactics, then fights with either of those boxers I mentioned earlier will no longer generate as much interest as compared to a Hatton victory through fair play.
What's worst is that they may not fight him at all.
I am a fan of both Ricky Hatton and Manny Pacquiao. Their styles are really entertaining to watch. Let's hope and pray that both will play the game fair and square come May 2, 2009 for the sake of the fight fans, the ones responsible for making them boxing superstars.