Brian Rose will be looking to blow away the cobwebs on Friday when he returns to action against Belgian James Hagenimana.
The Blackpool middleweight is aiming for a dominant victory in his six-rounder at the Liverpool Olympia, knowing a win could set him up for a showdown with Preston rival Scott Fitzgerald.
Rose will be the overwhelming favourite to claim the win, taking on a fighter that has lost 10 of his 19 contests as a professional – although only two of those defeats have come via KO.
“I’m focused on this fight because I need to get the job done otherwise this fight with Scott will never materialise,” Rose told The Gazette.
“I’m determined because there could be a big fight afterwards.
“When I’m sparring in the gym I’m feeling great, I’ve never felt so good. But I’ll only find out once I get in there and have a fight.
“I don’t want to mess around with these six-rounders anymore on these small-hall shows, I’m not about that.
“I want to test myself against the best and if I haven’t got it anymore, I’ll be content with what I’ve achieved.”
The 34-year-old made his long-awaited comeback last November and is looking to get himself firmly back in the super-welterweight mix in 2019.
Rose had been out of the ring for 18 months when he picked up a hard-fought points win over Alistair Warren in Manchester.
A shoulder injury picked up in that fight scuppered plans for a WBO European title fight with Conrad Cummnings in Belfast before the year was out however.
‘The Lion’, 30-5-1 as a professional, is back to full fitness though and has been going through a tough training camp in Los Angeles with trainer Bobby Rimmer.
There Rose has been based at Tiki Ghosn’s Huntington Beach Ultimate Training Centre. He has been training alongside mixed martial arts great Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson and with strength coach Paul Herrera and nutritionist Eric Huerta.
“It was amazing,” Rose added.
“I had to take myself away from my family, it was the longest I’ve ever been away from my kids. My wife was pregnant so that was hard.
“But for me it was the best thing I’ve ever done in my whole life because I got away from all of the distractions. I shifted 20 pounds while I was over there as well.
“I was a little bit unsure to go because I’ve got home comforts but I went over there and everyone helped me so much.”
Rose’s return to action in Liverpool will be live on YouTube channel iFL TV.