JAMIE McDonnell is ready to unleash six months’ worth of frustration to blast his way to a dream world title shot, writes Liam Hoden.
Hatfield’s bantamweight king will meet Vusi Malinga in an IBF world title final eliminator on October 20 in Sheffield.
And he cannot wait to get back in the ring for the first time since March and only the second time in 13 months.
He told the Free Press: “It’s been six months since my last fight and I just can’t wait to get back in there.
“I just ended up being left hanging about far too long and I was getting more and more frustrated.
“I walked into my manager Dennis Hobson’s office and told him I’d fight anybody, I was that eager to get back in.
“When this fight came up I jumped at the chance.
“I might have only had eight weeks notice but you can’t turn things like this down.
“Win this one and then the next fight is for a world title.”
McDonnell admits he by no means stuck to rigorous training or a strict diet during his hiatus period.
But the 26-year-old is pleased about his condition after three weeks of hard work in the gym.
He said: “I feel really good at the minute and the weight is coming off nicely.
“It’s been a tough summer in a lot of ways and there’s been times when I’ve just lived it up to be honest because I’ve had nothing to really aim for.
“But as soon as this fight was signed I knuckled down.
“I started sparring last week and I’m pleased with what I’m doing.
“I’ll definitely be ready for this.”
McDonnell has sparred with former European super bantamweight champion Rendall Munroe as preparations step up for his meeting with Malinga.
“Normally we wouldn’t spar until three weeks out but we want to be as ready as we can for this one,” he said.
“Rendall’s a southpaw like Malinga is so it’s good to get that experience because I’ve not had much of it.
“We’ve been building up nicely and things are ticking over well.”
Tickets for McDonnell’s bout at the Motorpoint Arena in Sheffield are available by calling 0114 2565656.