Michael Conlan eyes world gold, confirms pro run after Rio 2016
New European amateur champion Michael Conlan has informed WBN that he intends to turn professional immediately after his attempt at the Olympic title in Rio next year.
The 23 year-old, who claimed gold at bantamweight in Samakov, Bulgaria earlier this month, is now focusing his efforts on winning the World Championships in Doha this coming October before pushing on to Brazil in the summer of 2016.
Conlan, whose brother Jamie is already 14-0 in his run in the paid ranks, will then join his older sibling to carve his own path without the vest, following on from his impressive display in claiming a second amateur crown of his career.
“Winning the European title is a fantastic feeling,” Conlan told World Boxing News.
“I went there with minimum preparation and to come away with gold and also the best fighter of the championships, it’s a great achievement for me.
“The reception I’ve had since the win has been great. A lot of people have contacted me to congratulate me on my performances throughout the tournament. I seem to be getting noticed an awful lot more and It’s great to be recognised for those achievements.
“I am 100% confident in my ability and I believe I can now push on and get that world gold.”
Rio 2016 will represent the pinnacle of Conlan’s time as an amateur, and asked whether he feels any extra pressure being the European champion, the young Irishman was predictably in confident mood having just achieved his biggest feat to date.
“There is no extra pressure for me, no,” he said. “I feel winning the European championships gives me extra confidence going into Rio as I’ll know I’ll be one of the favourites.
“Knowing that people will be watching out for me will give me that extra incentive to get the gold medal.”
The Belfast man, who also won gold at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow last year, believes the forthcoming Olympic tournament will be the perfect platform to then launch an assault in the professional side of the sport.
“I look at what Jamie’s doing in the pro’s and considering his inactivity at the start, he’s done quite well to pick up some belts and now he’s gaining some momentum.
“Once the Olympics are over, I’ll 100% be joining him,” Conlan added.