Gavin Rees keen on Ricky Burns title showdown

Gavin Rees says defeat by WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner has reinforced his desire to regain a world title and has targeted Ricky Burns.

Ex-WBA world light-welterweight holder Rees takes on former British champion Anthony Crolla on 29 June in Bolton.

"I'm back headlining a big show against a good contender in Anthony Crolla," said Welshman Rees, 33.

"I'm not looking past Anthony but I want another world title shot. I'm sure that's what he's looking for as well."

Rees gets his opportunity to headline the show at the USN Bolton Arena after David Haye withdrew from his fight with Manuel Charr because of a hand injury sustained in training.

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I've had Ricky's trainer Billy Nelson in our corner a few times and I've sparred with Ricky, so I know him well

Gavin Rees

The televised promotion will help Rees advance his bid for a domestic showdown with stable-mate Burns.

The Scotsman holds the WBO belt and has already defended it in an all-British clash with Kevin Mitchell, while he was involved in a thriller with the previously unbeaten Jose Gonzalez last May.

Rees says he would relish a shot at Burns, a man he knows well, or perhaps Cuba's WBA champion Richard Abril or Miguel Vazquez, the IBF title holder.

"People are linking me to a fight with Ricky Burns because he's a world champion and I am hunting a world title shot, so it's logical," said Rees.

"Who wouldn't want to fight a world champion? It'd be another great night with two Brits going at it for a world title.

"I've had Ricky's trainer Billy Nelson in our corner a few times and I've sparred with Ricky, so I know him well and he's a nice lad.

"But he's got the belt so he's a natural fight to look for - but so is a fight with Richard Abril or Miguel Vazquez as they have belts too."

Chief support to the Rees-Crolla fight in Manchester sees Liverpool super-middleweight Paul Smith take on Tony Dodson for the vacant British title.

Elsewhere on the undercard, light-middleweight Brian Rose takes on Alexey Ribchev, rising super-bantamweight talent Scott Quigg returns to action and Team GB's Olympic boxing captain, Thomas Stalker, is joined by young stars Erick Ochieng, Dale Evans and Maxi Hughes.