Joe Ward travels to Bulgaria tomorrow for one of the defining fights of his AIBA Pro Boxing (APB) season in Sofia.
The ex European Elite champion meets French light-heavy Mathieu Bauderlique over eights rounds on Saturday in an APB eliminator for the Rio 2016 Olympics.
The winner of the weekend’s clash will meet either Bulgaria Spas Genov or Kennedy St Pierre of Mauritius for a place at the Rio 2016 Games and the 2015 APB light-heavy final.
Bauderlique has returned under the AIBA umbrella via APB after winning nine fights in the pro ranks.
Ward, the only international boxer to win three AIBA World Junior, Youth and Elite World Championship medals as a teenager, has already beaten Genov in Sofia APB this season.
Both Ward and Bauderlique have won three and lost one in APB this term.
Eddie Bolger and John Conlan will be working the Irish southpaw’s corner in Sofia.
“Joe has prepared very well for what will be a very tough fight on Saturday. He’s in great shape and looking forward to the challenge,” said Bolger.