Paddy Barnes is ready to return fitter and stronger as he bids to take the first step towards a second world title shot on Saturday.
The popular Belfast star – a two-time Olympic medallist – was defeated by Cristofer Rosales at Windsor Park back in August but is ready to bounce back on the Josh Warrington vs. Carl Frampton card, live on BT Sport.
Barnes (5-1-KO1) said: “I’m really excited to get back in there and get back to winning ways. I want to forget about my last fight and push on to a bigger and better 2019. It’s a massive card.
“I’ve been working on a lot of strength since the Rosales fight. I felt that maybe he was a bit stronger than me so I’ve been working on that more than anything.
“There’s a big Belfast contingent on the card with Frampton fighting for a world title and Michael Conlan also in action, so it’s very, very exciting for us.
“I’m focused on my job and this fight on Saturday falls perfectly for me for Christmas because the last 15 years as an amateur or professional, I’ve always had January and February fights.
“This time, I won’t feel guilty about indulging over the festive period because my fight is so close before Christmas. It’s really the perfect timing for me!
“I hope for maybe two more fights after this and then hopefully I’ll have another shot at a world title. Then I’ll simply take it from there…”
Alongside the return of Barnes and Frampton’s world title shot, the card sees MTK Global team-mates Billy Joe Saunders, Martin Murray, Michael Conlan, Liam Williams, Sam Maxwell and Troy Williamson in action.