IT’S taken joiner Neil Dawson just four fights to fashion the most unlikely attempt at a world title in recent local boxing history.
The Thorpe Hesley cruiserweight retired from boxing in 2005 for family reasons, but came back in 2011 - and is now rated number 14 in the world by the WBO.
That’s because he knocked out highly-rated Essex boy Tony Conquest in one round to win the WBO International title last month.
Dawson, aged 32, says he finds it hard to believe he has soared so highly in the charts.
But he is delighted, nonetheless.
“I am up there because they (promoters) have put me up against people they had expected would beat me” he said.
“That annoys me because I am always overlooked and they think people like Conquest would beat me - but look what happened to him.
“It was the same with Menay Edwards. Both times I went to London and was expected to lose and won.
“I took their ratings away from them and suddenly I am now ranked third in Britain and 14th in the world by the WBO.
“Who knows, a world cruiserweight champion may want a voluntary fight and pick me out of the bunch!
“It could happen, you never know.”
More realistically, perhaps, 6ft 4ins Dawson, who trains in Wombwell, has his eyes on the British title.
To do that, he will like have to wait for an opportunity to take on Durham’s Jon Lewis Dickinson.
He is to defend his belt against Sunderland’s David Dolan.
“That happens in February, so he is tied up and I will have to wait my chance” said the fighter who is promoted by Carl Greaves, but has no trainer.
“So perhaps I will land a British title eliminator before then - maybe against China Clarke, from Leeds who is rated at number four. That would be a good Yorkshire derby” said Dawson (won 11 lost 1)
The self employed joiner says he would be confident against any domestic opposition.
“Before I quit the sport in 2005 (for family reasons) I was sparring every night with Mark Hobson and had sparred with Clinton Woods.
“I was good then and I am now” said Dawson, formerly of Aston, who has two children aged four and two.