CHRIS Burton can smash the cruiserweight division wide open tonight by beating North-East rival Jon Lewis Dickinson.
That is the verdict of trainer Neil Fannan as his ambitious boxer prepares for the derby confrontation in Aberdeen.
The decision this week to remove the Northern Area title status from this evening’s 10-round clash appeared to have damaged the prospects of the Hartlepool-trained giant.
But Fannan believes a victory at the Aberdeen Exhibition Centre will catapult him into championship contention.
“We wanted to fight Dickinson because we think that is the best route towards success,” Fannan told SportMail.
“The fact it’s not for the title is not going to affect Hightower’s motivation.
“Jon Lewis is worried about losing before fighting for the English cruiserweight title against Matty Askins on April 21. That’s why he’s not defending his belt here.
“But our plan will be to beat him and take his place.
“If Hightower wins and if there is any justice he should get to jump into his place in the queue.
“He thinks he has the credentials to storm through the cruiserweights.
“When Chris came back as a cruiser he said ‘get me Dickinson, I’ll beat him’.
“He’s certain he’ll beat him – he has no doubts at all.
SEE Saturday’s Mail for full story