Josh Kelly and Lewis Ritson can continue their meteoric rise this weekend, but which of the Brits can win a world title quicker? The Panel have given their verdict…
Sunderland man Kelly is seeking the Commonwealth welterweight title in just his seventh fight as he challenges Kris George, while hometown hero Lewis Ritson defends his British lightweight belt against Paul Hyland Jnr on the same bill in Newcastle on Saturday, live on Sky Sports.
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Kelly, with his razor sharp reflexes, is expected to be moved quickly towards the top level by trainer Adam Booth, with Ritson also likely to make big strides after blasting aside his recent opponents in ruthless fashion.
But which fighter will be the first to claim a world crown? The Panel have picked the more likely champion.
There is no rush for either Lewis Ritson or Josh Kelly. They can both get to world level, but at their own pace. They are both good fighters, they are both quality operators.
You’ve got Josh Kelly’s skills and Lewis Ritson’s power, so they have each got their own strong individual attributes.
I’ve been impressed by Ritson, especially his last fight. It was a good win for him.
I’m going to go for Lewis Ritson. I think they are going to push Kelly more, but who could he beat out of the world champions at welterweight? He doesn’t beat Crawford, he doesn’t beat Spence, he doesn’t beat Thurman, and the other one is going to be Garcia and Porter. I don’t see where he comes in there?
You’ve got to really go with Ritson. He’s got good power and he’s obviously proved himself. He’s not knocking out complete idiots, he’s beating the top domestic lads, and he’s doing it with ease. I would say he’s got the better chance.
The problem that they’ve both got is that they’re in really tough weight divisions. Talent-wise, Kelly has all the attributes to be a world champion and has great, fantastic, potential, but it is difficult to compare him to the very elite guys, the likes of Spence Jr and Crawford, right now.
Ritson is exciting, strong and powerful – there’s a lot going for him – but he showed in the Cardle fight that he’s vulnerable. He’s looking great at domestic level so we have to wait and see what happens when he steps up.
It’s early days, he’s just broke out and looked fantastic, but it’s a massive jump from domestic to world level. Let’s see if he comes through Saturday, what he is like at European, and then you jump to world level.
I have to say Josh Kelly. He’s nailed on to be a world champion for the future. He carries a great amount of power, he’s got good ring craft, his defence is really good. He’s got a lot more attributes than Ritson at this stage.
But I do think Ritson is a very good fighter and he can definitely go a long way. He’s got more improvement to make in that period of time, if and when he gets to world level, than Josh Kelly has. Kelly is an outstanding talent.
Lewis Ritson against Paul Hyland Jr and Josh Kelly versus Kris George is on Sky Sports Action from 7pm on Saturday night.