Former unified bantamweight world titleholder Ryan Burnett retires

Former unified bantamweight world titleholder Ryan Burnett, unable to overcome injuries, announced his retirement from boxing on Friday.

"Although my retirement is forced through injuries, I carry a heart full of satisfaction and gratitude," Burnett said in a statement. "I have achieved my childhood dream and secured my future health, which is something no amount of money or titles can provide. I would like to thank everyone at [management company] MTK, Top Rank, Sky Sports and Matchroom for providing me the opportunity to fulfill my potential as a fighter."

Burnett (20-1, 10 KOs), 27, of Northern Ireland, won a 118-pound world title by decision over Lee Haskins in June 2017 and then moved directly into a title unification fight four months later in which he outpointed Zhanat Zhakiyanov in front a hometown crowd in Belfast.

Burnett vacated one belt and then outpointed Yonfrez Parejo in a March 2018 title defense before joining the World Boxing Super Series tournament.

He met Nonito Donaire in the quarterfinals last November but lost the belt by fourth-round stoppage due to an injury -- a torn oblique muscle on his right side.

After recovering from that injury, Burnett signed with Top Rank, which gave him a fight in Belfast in May, in which he knocked out Jelbirt Gomera in his junior featherweight debut. After that victory, Burnett planned to come to the United States to fight. But Burnett said that lingering injuries from fights and training led to his decision to retire.