Ricky Burns fight off as no replacement found for ExCel Arena title defence

The world lightweight champion will next defend his title in January.

Champion: Having relinquished his super-featherweight belt, Burns is aiming to claim the lightweight title
© STV

Ricky Burns will not fight as planned this weekend after no replacement was found following Jose Ocampo's withdrawal from their title fight.

Burns had been set to put his WBO world lightweight title on the line against Filipino southpaw Ocampo but the death of the challenger's trainer led to his withdrawal.

Attempts were made to line up a late replacement, and STV understands British lightweight champion Derry Matthews was in the frame as a possible opponent, but no bout has been arranged and Burns' name is off the card at the Excel Arena this Saturday.

Promoter Alex Morrison told STV that Burns' camp had been unable to find a satisfactory fight at short notice.

"Ricky will not fight this weekend," Morrison said. "We couldn't find an opponent for him to fight.

"He was offered a 10-round fight but decided not to take it."

The cancellation comes after the original opponent, Liam Walsh had been forced to pull out before Ocampo stepped in as challenger. With the Filipino in mind, Burns had been sparring with a southpaw in preparation but Morrison said Burns was philosophical about having to stand down.

The promoter revealed that the champion would defend his title next month, hopefully on home soil.

"We're looking at January 26 for the next title defence and hopefully that will take place in Glasgow," Morrison revealed.

"Ricky has taken a week off and then he will return to training.

"He's philosophical about it, it's just a sequence of events and these things happen."

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