He may be fresh from winning his first professional title but Maxi Hughes admits he is itching to take his career to the next level.
The Rossington super featherweight captured the International Masters title by convincingly out-pointing Kakhaber Avetisian in Sheffield last month.
But he is desperate to mix it with the domestic elite sooner rather than later.
Hughes impressed in defeat against now English champion Scotty Cardle in April last year and says he had expected his career would go from strength to strength from then on.
“It’s all been a bit frustrating for me if I’m really honest about things,” Hughes told the Free Press.
“It’s not far off two years since I fought Scotty Cardle.
“I thought that was the start for me but it’s not really turned out that way.
“I’ve had a few setbacks and ticked over but I’m not really where I hoped to be.
“It was great to win that title against a really tough kid but my aim is to be fighting top domestic opponents.
“I’m back out in November and it looks like that is probably going to be a defence of this title.
“Hopefully the plan will be for me to start pushing towards the top level in this country early next year.”
Hughes is now training full time under Dave Hulley and Jimmy Harrington in Lindholme alongside Jamie and Gavin McDonnell.
And his reputation is such that he is being requested for sparring with top names.
He said: “I was asked to spar with (Olympic gold medalist) Luke Campbell and I’ve regularly been sparring with Josh Warrington who won the European title at the weekend.
“It’s good that people are recognising me as a good southpaw at the weight but I want to show people by getting the results in the ring.”
Hughes is pencilled in to fight at iceSheffield on November 14.
Meanwhile, gym mate Jamie McDonnell will defend his WBA bantamweight world title against Walberto Ramos on November 22 in Liverpool.