Brian Rose made his long-awaited return to the ring on Friday night and then immediately turned his attentions to his next big fight.
The Blackpool favourite picked up a hard-fought points win over Alistair Warren at Manchester’s Victoria Warehouse as the former world title challenger ended his 18-month exile.
‘The Lion’ then went face-to-face with Irishman Conrad Cummings post-fight as it was announced the pair would meet in Belfast on December 7 for the WBO European middleweight title.
Rose had been originally pencilled in to face Luke Keeler at York Hall in London seven days later but the Dubliner has picked up a back injury meaning a change of plan for the 33-year-old.
“It’s a big fight for me,” said the former British champion whose professional record now stands at 30-5-1.
“I was supposed to be fighting Luke Keeler and it’s shame he’s pulled out because it would have been a great fight.
“But I think this one’s going to be a great fight too.
“It’s a quick turnaround but I need to stay active now.
“It’s no good me having another two months out of the ring because I’ll just go back to square one.”
Rose admitted it was far from a vintage performance as he topped the bill in Manchester.
Warren had only won 11 of his previous 35 fights but played a big part in what turned into a toe-to-toe battle.
After six hard rounds it was the Blackpool man who took the decision 58-57.
“I knew it wasn’t going to be plain sailing, I’ve had two years out of the ring,” he said.
“I had a good time. I got married, went on stag dos. It’s not as if I’ve had a good rest.
“For me this camp was about losing a lot of weight and getting fit.
“I’ve not really had time to work on things. I’ve only just starting working with Robert, Bobby Rimmer’s son and I’m getting used to him.
“I’m happy with the performance considering how long I’ve been out.
“I can’t be too critical. It was about getting the job done and getting the win.
“To be honest, the plan was to establish the jab and move my feet and I didn’t do any of that!
“Now I can go away and work on beating Conrad Cummings.”
The Northern Irishman is six years Rose’s junior at 27 and with a professional record of 15-2-1 has far less experience.
Their meeting at the Titanic Exhibition Centre next month will be live on YouTube channel IFL TV.