‘I believe I’m ready now’ – Michael Conlan primed for a world title shot

Michael Conlan [13(7)-0] assures he is ready to jump straight into world title action if afforded the opportunity.

Like it has wit sports people across the board, the current pandemic has disturbed and disrupted Conlan’s 2020 plans.

The Belfast feather was set for a March step up and rumour suggested he would then get the chance to trade leather for a world title at the Falls Park in early August.

A fourth successive Madison Square Garden St Patrick’s Day fight night and a fight with Belmar Preciado was cancelled last minute, prompting most to surmise a world title shot would be delayed.

The thinking was the Belfast fighter may need a stiff test before an elite level world title shot.

However, the two time Olympian disagrees. Conlan is adamant he is ready now. The Adam Booth trained fighter points out he hasn’t been forced to produce his best as a pro as of yet and predicts he would rise to the occasion if he was to challenge for a strap.

“I believe I’m ready now,” he told Off The Ball.

“I know when the tougher tests are put in front of me I’ll comfortably beat them! I wouldn’t be worried, my level will raise. I don’t believe I’ve shown 50% of what I can do, there are more levels to my game.

“I don’t believe I’ve had the kind of opponent to bring it out of me yet. Once the time comes you’ll see.”

While confident he has what it takes to fight for a world title right now, Conlan won’t demand a shot.

The 28-year-old Top Rank guided fighter is happy to leave the big decision to Top Rank, coach Booth and his manager and brother Jamie Conlan.

“The fact that I have Jamie and Adam around me, they’re knowledgeable people, they know the boxing game.

“They have my best interests at heart, and they want me to make the right moves.”

Speaking further on his relationship with Booth, Conlan revealed he has developed a close bond with the man who helped Andy Lee and Ryan Burnett win world titles.

The World Championship gold medal winner also praised the ‘Dark Lord’ for helping him make significant improvements.

“Personally I’m very, very close with Adam. I have so much respect for the man, he’s so knowledgeable. I was actually living with him for the last few weeks there and I can’t thank him enough for everything he’s done for me.

“I think he’s changed my game completely, I think he’s a fantastic coach. I can see myself getting there sooner rather than later, we’re progressing and I’m seeing things turning out in the gym… now it’s gonna speed up and we’re gonna see much more rapid change.”

When Conlan returns to the ring remains to be seen. The Feile and August is still an option, but it seems more likely big time boxing won’t return until September. Whether the Feile will be pushed back if needs be remains unclear.

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