Lytham’s Scott Cardle says this weekend’s hastily-arranged bout with Ricky Burns could not have been more perfectly timed.
The lightweight was originally due to challenge for the Commonwealth title against Joe Cordina before the Welshman pulled out with injury.
In a bizarre twist of fate, Cardle will now take on a much bigger name in Burns, who has won 42 fights in a career that began in 2001.
Cardle is full of respect for the 35-year-old, who was defeated by Anthony Crolla in his last outing, but he believes this is the perfect time to face Burns.
“Don’t get me wrong, with my Scottish background he’s still a very big name,” Cardle told The Gazette.
“He’s a big fighter in my eyes. He’s a legend in Scotland and he will always be no matter what he faces in the next few fights.
“He’s made history for Scottish boxing and for me to get the opportunity to fight someone like him could be perfect timing in a way. I can personally put on a great show and hopefully steal a bit of his limelight.
“With my background and all of my family being up in Scotland, it could make some big nights up there as well as back home in Lytham St Annes and Blackpool.”
The fight is on the undercard of Tony Bellew’s world cruiserweight fight with Oleksandr Usyk at Manchester Arena on Saturday.
Cardle admits it’s not ideal having to change his gameplan so late in the day, but is confident he has what it takes to claim the victory.
He added: “It’s a totally different opponent than Cordina. It’s a tough fight in its own sense but I personally feel that Cordina would have been a much trickier opponent.
“Ricky Burns obviously has a very effective style and it shows, because his record speaks for itself. He’s a three-weight world champion so I know exactly what I’m in for.
“But I didn’t have to think about taking the fight. I mentioned it to my coach Matty Ellis but he jumped at it as well.
“We had been training for up to 14 weeks and we were very confident no matter who we fought, so to get an opportunity like Ricky Burns and to add that scalp to my record would be incredible.
“My whole gameplan is just to remain sensible and keep my head and keep switched on the whole fight.
“It’s a totally different fight to what I was going into. Cordina is a great amateur, he’s a great mover and he’s got fast feet and fast hands. My gameplan was tailor-made for him.
“But now I’ve had to change it a lot and now I’ve got to keep my head and stay switched on, because one thing about Ricky is he can drag anyone into a bit of a fight. If that’s the case, that’s how he wins the fight.
“I’ve just got to use my amateur pedigre, my fast feet and my fast hands, stay away from his attacks and be smart.”