Ryan Burnett hasn’t put a foot wrong in his 14 fight career. The talented Belfast prospect remains unbeaten, has banked the British bantamweight title, secured himself a World ranking and is said to be just two fights away from a World title.
Considering Carl Frampton, now a confirmed Irish fight legend, didn’t fight for a World title until his nineteenth fight, Burnett’s progress seems impressive.
Eddie Hearn, however, seems to suggest there is something missing. Not in terms of talent or potential, but from the promotional side of things.
The Matchroom boss wants to push Burnett into producing the ‘spectacular’ performance that he knows he is capable of, and feels that Burnett needs a fight he can sink his teeth into to help his progress toward World honours.
Hearn’s comments after the Belfast 24 year old’s points win over Cesar Ramirez on Saturday may come across as harsh, considering Burnett handled a tricky opponent comfortably. However, on closer inspection, he seems to be suggesting that the contender would not only benefit from being exposed to the build-up fighting a more known name brings, but would also be pushed to lay down a marker and produce a crowd-pleasing performance.
“I know people at home after five or six rounds want to see him get on top of this kid and bash him up,” Hearn told IFL TV.
“I felt like that against [Jason] Booth and [Anthony] Settoul. Technically he is excellent, but I don’t think he will be delighted with the performance. It was a solid performance against a tricky awkward guy. It was a solid performance, but I am looking for him to be spectacular. I think we really need to get a fight he can get his teeth into,” he added.
One fight that would generate interest is a clash with former World Champion Paul Butler. The Liverpool fighter, who has long been linked with Jamie Conlan, is mandatory challenger for Burnett’s British title. It’s a bout Hearn is open to, but seems unlikely due to Butler’s Frank Warren connections.
“What about Paul Butler? The Board have ordered that for the British title. I don’t think that will happen, but what about Ryan Farrag? We could do that in Liverpool, something he can really get his teeth into.
“I have so much confidence and belief in Ryan Burnett as a fighter, but the three performances so far we have seen glimpses but not what I know is coming. I think to bring that out of him we need a fight like that. I said to Adam Booth, we want three fights before he challenges for a World title, well that’s the first one and now we have to step it up. Butler would be Ideal, even Farrag if not Farrag Karim Guerfi, who beat Farrag for the European title, these kind of fights is what he needs to progress to the next level. I know there is so much more to come from him.”
Watch Hearn discuss Burnett with IFL TV nine minutes into the interview below: