The clock is ticking towards Kane Baker’s next ring date now he’s in the driving seat for his professional boxing return.
Baker will lace on the gloves again at the Venue in Dudley on Saturday August 5, after receiving medical clearance that was so badly needed.
The 27-year-old welterweight should have fought Conor Benn on the Matchroom Boxing bill at the 02 Arena in London on July 1, but was ruled out of doing so.
The game Brummie, from Bartley Green, accepted the short-notice offer without hesitation and, with the card televised on Sky Sports, him versus Benn would have made the live cut.
Baker’s medical expired the eve before the fight, though, so British Boxing Board of Control officials could not let him compete.
He’s since travelled to Liverpool to complete his tests and has the go head to resume action next month. He retains his ‘0,’ after racking up four points wins as a pro.
Benn, the son of legendary former world champion Nigel, instead stopped southpaw Michael Cole in three rounds to make it seven wins from seven bouts, with five TKOs.
‘The Destroyer,’ who is just 20, has been in dialogue with Baker about reviving their match and needs another warm-up later in the year, before getting into the title chase.
Baker will use his next date in the Black Country to showcase his skills, with a fresh impetus that a good performance could lead to big things.
He said: “It was the last thing I was thinking about when I took the fight, I knew it was due up soon but it’s my first year as a pro. I’ll keep on top of it from now on.
“I’ve had the lot done, CAT and MRI scans, blood test, height, weight, all the normal checks from the doctor. It took a couple of hours to make sure I’m in good shape.
“It’s gutting to think about where I could have been that night, instead of being at the 02 I was watching it at home with my fiance, Coral.
“Michael gave a brilliant account of himself, for the amount of time that he had to prepare. He can hold his head high, but I’d like to think I could have done better!
“I’ve spoken to Conor Benn on social media and there’s mutual respect between us. If that comes up again, I’m here and waiting. We are both unbeaten and we’ve been matched before.
“I took it at three days notice, why not give me an eight-week camp this time and get the best out of me? It’s never nice to see someone take a fight at short notice, so let’s put it all to bed.
“I’d never look past August 5, I’m going in there to do what I can do best. If people don’t know who I am by now, they will after that.
“This experience has got me right into it and, when I next fight, the crowd will look at me and think ‘is he good enough to take Conor Benn?’ and ‘how long would he have lasted?’
“There’s lots of talk about it, but wanting to fight someone and being matched are two different things. I just want that match again.
“There’s a lot of expectation and a bit of pressure on me now, all because of talk about Conor Benn. This has given me a kick and I’ve got some goals now.
“It’s time to put on a show, the Venue in Dudley is always a good night and like a home to me, it’s a shame we can’t bring Conor Benn there!”
The Dudley show has been titled ‘Knocked for Six,’ as most of the bouts confirmed will take place over a six-round distance.
It’s more time to perform for Dudley’s own Les Byfield and Rowley Regis’ Tyler Denny, while Birmingham cohorts Baker and debutant Daryl Pearce, from Rednal, feature over four.
A third prospect from the Second City, Raza Hamza, no longer features with a six-round replacement offering soon to be announced.
Tickets, priced at £35 and £50 ringside with waitress service, are available now by calling 07976 283 157. Alternatively, contact any of the boxers in the home corner on Facebook.