Belfast man Tommy McCarthy has been handed a golden opportunity when he returns to the ring on October 11 for a clash with Fabio Turchi.
McCarthy was to have faced Turchi in July but the Italian withdrew due to an injury. Now the two men will box for two belts in Trento, Italy - the WBC international cruiserweight title and EU cruiserweight crown.
McCarthy enjoyed a routine win instead and has since teamed up with new coach Peter Taylor, the father of unified world lightweight champion Katie.
"To be the best, you have to work with the best," said McCarthy, who believes his career can finally take off with a win over Turchi, who is ranked 15 by the World Boxing Council.
The Belfast man suffered a disappointing loss at the hands of Richard Riakporhe earlier this year but after a long lay-off followed by two wins over journeymen he appeared to be seriously undercooked. McCarthy has no doubt that he will rise to the challenge of Turchi and prove he can push on towards a possible world title shot in 2020.
"I have sparred the best cruiserweights in the world so I know what I can do," said McCarthy.
"I think I may have slipped into a sparring partner mindset because I spent so long sparring and not fighting but that has gone now."
Meanwhile, Antrim's Kane Tucker was beaten on a unanimous decision by Erkin Adylbek of Kyrgyzstan in the light-heavy class at the World Championships in Russia.
Tucker, a top young talent, went down to Adylbek on scores of 30-27, 30-27, 30-27, 29-28 and 29-27.