Josh McLaren on the comeback trail this Saturday night

UKO Boxing 26/02/2015

Rob Ellis

Stoke’s Josh McLaren insists he has ‘licked his wounds and is ready to go again’ after suffering a first professional boxing defeat.

The likeable light welterweight lost to Walsall’s Luke Paddock when the pair went toe-to-toe for the vacant Midlands Area Light Welterweight Title in December.

It was a bridge too far for McLaren in only his seventh fight as he suffered a points defeat at the hands of ‘Cool Hand’. Now though, refreshed and re-focussed, the 24 year-old is determined to succeed.

“I take my hat off to Luke, he’s a top lad and was the better man on the night,” McLaren admitted to www.uko-boxing.com. “It pains me that people only saw a shadow of myself that night for reasons that I won’t go in to as I’m not one to make excuses.

“Like I say, Luke was the better man on the night and I wish him all the best in the future. I mean that, he’s a lovely lad!

“I know what went wrong and will only learn from it. After licking my wounds, I have taken a lot of positives. I jumped straight to a ten rounder after only completing four rounds beforehand and I took it on relatively short notice. I showed I’ve got a big heart too. I got tagged early but never took a backward step. The pressure of the ‘0’ is gone and I’m back and ready to get my hand raised again.”

McLaren is back in action this weekend as he appears on Black Country Boxing’s ‘Heir To The Throne’ Bill in Cannock on Saturday. Stablemates Grant Cunningham and Rob Hunt are both in action and McLaren is eager to make is a hat-trick of wins for the Longton-based Fight Factory.

“It’s nice to be back in the gym,” he added. “I’ve been doing a lot of work with Grant and he’s been very complimentary.

“I’m really looking forward to fighting now. I can’t wait. Rob’s been looking super sharp in the gym and Grant is an absolute machine. He’s got an edge about him that I haven’t seen in him before and I can’t see someone holding him off for ten rounds. I believe all three of us will be victorious on the night.”

Cunningham takes on Damon Jones in an English Middleweight Title Eliminator whilst McLaren’s old foe, Luke Paddock, makes a maiden defence of his Midlands Area Light Welterweight Title when he takes on Newark’s Fergus Taylor

Hunt takes on Melksham’s Liam Richards for British Bronze Masters Welterweight whilst Stourbridge light middleweight, Steven Pearce, Leeds welterweight, Stevi Mennell, and Birmingham duo Sean Davis and Waqas Mohammed are also in action.

The show takes place at Chase Leisure Centre, Stafford Road, Cannock, Staffordshire, WS11 4AL. Tickets, priced at £30 and £60 Ringside, are available by calling 01543 504065

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