Mick Conlan hopes British opponent will test him


Mick Conlan [9(6)-0] put on what was widely described as the best performance of his pro career last time out but the Belfast featherweight believes he can be even better against a different kind of opponent.

Last time out, in Las Vegas three weeks ago, Conlan stopped former Italian champion Nicola Cipolletta in the seventh round.

It was a one-sided fight, with Cipolletta largely refusing to engage as the Irishman patiently broke him down and the bout was waved off in the penultimate stanza.

Conlan is out again on December 22nd at the Manchester Arena on the Josh Warrington v Carl Frampton undercard where he will step up to ten rounds and box for a to-be-announced title against a to-be-announced British foe.

The 26-year-old is hopeful, and indeed confident, that this unnamed opponent will come with more ambition on the BT Sport Box Office card.

The Olympic bronze medal admitted that “Cipolletta really irritated me. I want someone who’s going to come and meet me. I don’t want someone negative.”

“Cipolletta didn’t even try and punch. He was meant to be a solid opponent but I had to make myself look good against him despite his negativity.”

His fight next month will be his fifth of the year and a fifth under London coach Adam Booth. It’s a relationship that has really come into its own recently following initial reservations from Booth.

Conlan outlined how “I’m already back in camp now and we’re at the stage where my trainer Adam Booth and I are really clicking as a coach-fighter relationship. I’m improving my understanding of what we need to do and how we need to do it.

“Against Cipolletta, I was happy and he was happy. He’s completely calm when he talks in the corner and I felt anything he asked me to do, I could do. He never panics.”

“Adam is very methodical with how he works and I feel having him in my corner is a big benefit. Since I’ve turned professional, I’ve a lot more confidence.”

“He’s not as outwardly fiery as I am but he has that in him as well. He knows how to get into my head and I feel it’s meant to work the way it’s meant to work. He doesn’t need to change anything about me.”

Conlan’s December 22nd opponent will be officially announced before the end of the week.

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie