McDonnell, 29, made it 15 fights undefeated when claiming the vacant EBU belt against Oleksandr Yegorov in March of this year and now faces ex-Carl Frampton victim Jeremy Parodi in the first defence of his title on September 5th in Leeds.
According to Coldwell, McDonnell is now a month into camp for his test against the Frenchman – having been joined by Jamie last week, and won’t be using the six-round Frampton KO defeat as a yardstick for his upcoming clash.
“It’s a big step-up for Gavin McDonnell, a big step-up,” Coldwell told World Boxing News.
“Parodi has only lost two fights out of 40, and to be honest, people only know him from the Frampton fight and Frampton is obviously at a totally different level. Parodi just got out-classed and out-gunned on that occasion, but when you look at him in his other fights, he’s a totally different fighter than what I thought he was after the Frampton fight.
“At first, that was the only bit of footage I could find, but I can say he is a very tough fighter. I rate him and he’s definitely Gavin’s toughest fight. It’s the biggest step-up he’s had.
“You have to remember with Gavin he’s only had 15 fights and he didn’t have an amateur career. You wouldn’t necessarily expect him to be as successful as he has been, but he’s just come through in the last year, eighteen months like a whirlwind and really took off.”
After initially walking away from boxing, Gavin has found a firm foothold during his five years as a professional and Coldwell believes that watching the success of his sibling was a catalyst for the success that has since followed for the Doncaster man.
“Gavin and his twin brother Jamie have got an immense will to win and that you can’t really teach,” said Coldwell.
“I know watching Jamie was the driving force in Gavin getting back into the sport because he did walk away from it, and I think when Jamie won the European title that was his inspiration and the reason why he got back into it.
“Gav’s done really well to get where he is and we will be looking for that to continue against Parodi,” he added.