Conlan fired up for double title eliminator
Jamie Conlan has been handed a golden opportunity to kickstart his career at the Odyssey Arena on Saturday night when he takes on Mike Robinson.
Conlan and Robinson will box a 10-round final eliminator for a shot at the British and Commonwealth super-flyweight titles on the supporting bill to Carl Frampton's clash with European champion Kiko Martinez.
The Belfast man had been lined- up for an inter-continental title fight but that is unlikely to materialise, but after a year out of the ring, this is just the chance manager John Breen wanted for his unbeaten prospect.
Breen said: "I have said for a long time that Jamie is a great prospect and now he has a big chance to show Sky, Eddie Hearn and the fans in the Odyssey just how good he is.
"The fact it is a final eliminator for the British and Commonwealth titles is big boost and we know that Robinson is a tough guy, he's going to come looking for Jamie.
"He was lined up to fight Paul Butler for the British title but then got turned down by the Board, just the way Jamie was turned down for the Commonwealth title due to inactivity.
"He immediately took the fight with Jamie – it's a big fight for both of them and I think it will be a cracker but Jamie will win.
"He's had some tough times over the past year with a lot of fights falling through but now he can use this as a big launching pad."
Despite 12 months away from the ring, Breen insists he will not suffer from ring rust.
"Jamie will have sparred 100 rounds for this fight so he is ready to go. I think people will be surprised just how good he is," said Breen.
"He not only needs to win but to put on a show and then I'm hoping that Eddie Hearn gets behind him and gets him a title chance."
Meanwhile, Commonwealth Games gold medallist Eamonn O'Kane is determined to bounce back from his defeat to John Ryder just before Christmas when he meets Gary Boulding on the Odyssey show.
"This fight is definitely very important to get myself back into the rankings and back into the mix to do what I want to do," said O'Kane. "It is very important to get the win. It was disappointing but I believe good things have come out of it.
"I would say it has been a good kick in the backside for me. There were a lot of things in the preparation for that fight that were my own fault.
"I took the fight at short notice, the fight was confirmed 13 days before the fight and in 13 days I had to lose too much weight.
"I had been ticking over but I hadn't been training for a 10-round fight."