Scott Fitzgerald has targeted a summer showdown with British super-welterweight champion Ted Cheeseman.
The Preston boxer became the mandatory challenger for the Lonsdale belt after his memorable victory over arch-rival Anthony Fowler at the weekend.
The 27-year-old inflicted the first professional loss on his former GB team-mate on Saturday when he defeated the Liverpudlian on points.
In a close and bruising encounter, Fitgerald recovered from taking some severe blows in the ninth round to put Fowler on his backside in the 10th and final round.
The Larches and Savick ABC fighter is not averse to offering Fowler a re-match, but first he wants to become British champion by beating Cheeseman and has also set his sights on facing Spain’s European champion Sergio Garcia down the line.
“I want Cheeseman next,” the Preston fighter said. “Give me two week of chilling and then I want Cheesman eight weeks after that.”
Fitzgerald revealed that a pep talk from his father Dave – who is also his trainer – gave him the inspiration to produce that monumental effort in the final round, which swayed the contest with Fowler his way.
“He caught me with a couple of good shots in the ninth,” he added. “I showed that I can take a good shot. In the corner going out for the last round, my dad said, ‘Go and make something happen’.
“I caught him with a right uppercut and then a good left hook and he’s gone down. I was buzzing.
“I felt like I had been edging rounds – I can understand that they were close and the rounds could have gone either way.
“I know the 10-8 round really helped me on the scorecards.
Fitzgerald’s reward for beating Fowler was the WBA International Challenge belt but it also places him inside the world top-15 at his weight.
And his promoter Eddie Hearn, of Matchroom Boxing, praised the Preston man for taking on the challenege of facing Fowler so early in his professional career.
“It’s always horrible putting too young prospects in with each other because ideally you would have this fight five or six fights down the line,” Hearn said.
“But they both wanted it. They both felt they could win. I said before the loser will have a big career and the winner will have a big career.
“Obviously the winner is in a much better position and Scott will go top 15 in the world.