Top-class middleweight operator Matthew Macklin is ready to put a challenging period behind him as the Irishman readies himself for a summer return following six months out of the ring.
The 32 year-old has seen clashes with Felix Sturm and Daniel Geale fall by the wayside in recent times and hopes to have a warm-up fight in the next few weeks before a world title challenge by the end of this year.
“It’s been a frustrating six months,” Macklin told World Boxing News.
“Firstly, because it looked like the Sturm rematch was going to happen only for nothing to materialise. Then I trained very hard and was in top form for the fight with Geale, but obviously that fell apart so yeah it’s been a testing few months.
“I hope to fight before the end of the summer and we have few things being discussed right now, so hopefully we will know something definite in the coming days about my next fight.
“There has also been an offer made to IBF champion Sam Soliman to fight be in Ireland before Christmas so if he accepts my next fight will lead into a world title fight.”
As usual since his latest win, Macklin has been linked to big domestic bouts with long-time rivals Martin Murray and Andy Lee as British fans keep their fingers crossed that two, or even all three, agree to fight each other at some point down the line.
Macklin has always been open to fighting either Murray or Lee in the past, and the three-time world title challenger remains in the same frame of mind when asked once again about the possibility.
“I think a fight with Murray could still happen, definitely,” said Macklin. “So long as we both keep winning I think one of us, if not both, will pick up a world title and then a fight between us would be huge.
“In terms of Andy, he scored a great knockout when he fought down at 154 in his last fight though his performance up to that point was poor. He pulled a great right hook out the bag when he really needed it so fair play to him for that.
“I think he is staying down at light-middle right now, but I’m sure he’ll fight at 160 again and everybody knows that a fight between me and him is a big seller in Ireland.”
Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay for tweets of upcoming news on WBN