Crolla ready to ‘make history’ against Linares

Anthony Crolla insists that respect will go out of the window when he defends his WBA world lightweight title against Jorge Linares on Saturday.

'Millon Dollar' Crolla, who has 31 wins to his name, weighed in at 9st 8lbs 5oz – three ounces heavier than challenger Linares – who is a former three-weight world champion and has won 40 of his professional 43 contests.

Both fighters have shown each other plenty of respect in the build up to the clash in Manchester but Crolla insists that he is now ready to get down to business.

He told Sky Sports News HQ: "I'm really happy. I made weight comfortably. I've not seen Jorge on the scales but we're both in shape. We had great notice so there's no reason not to be in the shape of our career. I can't wait until tomorrow night.

"I'm taken aback to see the support when I step on the scales. I'm so thankful for it and I'll make them proud.

"It's just business and we shook hands. We'll touch gloves and then all respect goes out of the window once that first bell goes.

"It's the biggest fight out there and these are the challenges you get in boxing for. Winning puts my name out around the world. Linares is well respected in America and South America.

"Getting those two beautiful belts, the WBA and WBC Diamond and then joining that elite club of Ring magazine champions being recognised as the best lightweight on the planet – it doesn't get any better than that.

"I'm sure we'll have that arena rocking just like we did in the Ricky Hatton days. I'm ready to make a bit of history."

The promoter of Linares, Robert Diaz, is, however, confident that his fighter will prevail come Saturday night: "I do see it as a very, very tough fight because of the will to win of Anthony Crolla but I don't see it as a difficult fight because of the talent that [Linares] is going to display."

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