Anthony Crolla wants to win Ring title by beating Jorge Linares
By Tim Hobbs
Last Updated: 14/06/16 4:19pm
Anthony Crolla says winning the Ring Magazine world championship will be a dream come true if he can beat Jorge Linares.
Crolla (31-4-3-KO13), the WBA world champion, will also be competing for Linares' WBC 'Diamond' belt, after the Venezuelan (40-3-KO27) was upgraded from 'champion in recess' following an injury lay-off.
But the Mancunian - named Ring Magazine's Most Inspirational fighter of 2015 - says adding their title to his list would be the pinnacle.
I want to test myself against the very best and that's what I believe Linares to be.
He said: "The Ring Magazine belt is going to be on the line and it doesn't get any bigger than that. You have titles and unifications but with that on the line, it's their way of seeing who's the No 1 in the division. It's something I could never refuse.
"If I can't get up for fighting a multiple-weight world champion, I'm in the wrong sport. I want to test myself against the very best and that's what I believe Linares to be.
"I'm enjoying life too much as a champion to let it go and I want more of these big nights. I know that when I finish, nothing will give me the same buzz as going out to fight on those big nights. I want to retire knowing I've fought the best people I can fight.
"I could've very easily had one or two soft defences before looking at another tough fight but I feel like I've been handed this opportunity to fight a great fighter and I'm not going to turn it down.
"The Ring Magazine belt is the stuff dreams are made of. How many great British fighters do we see who don't get that chance?"
Linares, who is based in Tokyo, has won world titles at featherweight, super-featherweight and lightweight.