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Dancing on Ice's Ricky Hatton says he was 'a broken man' after first training session

The former world champion boxer is partnered with Robin Johnstone

Ricky Hatton on Dancing on Ice
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
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Former professional boxer Ricky Hatton has revealed he was "a broken man" after taking a turn on the ice for his first Dancing on Ice training session last year. 

The 45-year-old, who is competing in the 2024 series of the ITV show, said he was "dreading" his first time in the rink, when he had to skate in front of Olympic champions and judges Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean.

WATCH: Every Dancing on Ice champion on the show

When asked how confident he felt about taking to the ice for the first time, Ricky told HELLO! and other press: "I was dreading it because during the masterclass Torvill and Dean were in the middle of the ice rink and you had to skate into the middle to be interviewed by them. At that time, I'd not done two steps never mind go to the middle of the ice rink, I think it must have taken me half an hour. 

"I was a broken man," he admitted, before adding: "Everyone must have thought Ricky's the weakest link here, but it's been great to see how not just myself, but how everyone's improved."

Ricky Hatton is joining Dancing on Ice 2024© ITV
Ricky Hatton is a former professional boxer

Ricky, who is partnered with skating professional Robin Johnstone, was at a slight disadvantage when training first began due to having less time on the ice than his other contestants.

Explaining that he had to balance his skating schedule with his job as a boxing coach, the former world champion boxer said: "At first I could only manage to train Tuesdays and Thursdays. Where other contestants were doing Monday to Friday, two hours a day, I could only do Tuesday and Thursday because I train professional boxers still. I had three boxers with fights coming up, so I had to be in the gym to train them."

Detailing his rigorous training regime, he continued: "I was doing three and a half hours on Tuesday and Thursday, I thought my head was going to fall off."

Ricky Hatton & Robin Johnstone© ITV
Ricky is partnered with Robin Johnstone

However, training two times a week "wasn't enough" for Ricky, who felt the gap between sessions was too big. After his coaching duties came to an end, the sportsman spent more time on the ice.

"Once my boxers' fights had finished, I started putting in an extra day here and there and as hard as it is, it's stood me in very good stead," he explained. 

Dancing on Ice 2024 cast: Eddie, Lou, Ricky, Roxy, Amber, Miles, Adele, Greg, Claire, Ryan, Hannah, Ricky© ITV
Dancing on Ice returns to ITV on Sunday January 14

Ricky is perhaps one of the best-known boxers in the UK, having competed professionally for over a decade from 1997 to 2012. During his career, Ricky won the title of light welterweight and welterweight world champion.

Appearing on This Morning after his place in the line-up was announced, Ricky seemed fairly confident. "If I can hold my nerve in the boxing ring I should be able to hold my nerve in the ice rink," he said. "I like setting new challenges and keeping myself busy!"