Lewis Taylor aims to gatecrash Saturday’s IBF world bantamweight title party headlined by Jamie McDonnell and Julio Ceja.
Dronfield middleweight Taylor, 23, defends his International Masters Bronze title on the undercard of McDonnell’s Keepmoat bout. He takes on McDonnell’s compatriot Jason Ball, who will be backed by a passionate home support.
But Taylor believes he can thrive on any hostility coming his way.
He said: “He’ll have the crowd, but if people boo me, it just gives me a buzz and makes me work harder. The fact I’m fighting away from home doesn’t scare me at all.”
Taylor is confident of beating Ball: “I’ve been put through my paces good and proper, I feel fit and strong, I’m in the best shape I’ve ever felt. I think I’m the favourite, but he’s a strong kid. He’ll take advantage if I give him any openings. He’s had five wins and he’s knocked four of them out, so that’s what he’ll try and do. I prefer someone to come and have a go, it makes the show better and it keeps me sharper.”
In the main bout, McDonnell faces a formidable challenge to become Doncaster’s first ever world champion.
But Taylor feels the 27 year-old can achieve home-town glory. He said: “He’s fighting a strong kid, but I’ve got 100% faith in Jamie to win. I reckon he’ll end up stopping him in the middle of the fight.”
Taylor and his Sheffield promoter Dennis Hobson are eyeing big things for 2013.
He said: “I’m hoping to step up for an area title this year. I don’t mind going in against anyone. I know I can train and prepare for anyone who wants to get in the ring with me. Hopefully this fight will get me more recognition. With a crowd of around 9,000 expected, Taylor admits there will be a few nerves. But he said: “I think it will spur me on, It’s going to be a great atmosphere and I think I’ll hopefully impress a few people. It’s going to be a great night.”