Big Mac's ready to taste big time

Joel McIntyre has set his sights on making a statement on the big stage as he pursues a British title shot.

Saturday, 15th July 2017, 7:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 12th September 2017, 12:08 pm
Joel McIntyre last fought in December against Miles Shinkwin. Picture: Neil Marshall (161437-1)

McIntyre steps out at Wembley Arena tonight on the undercard of Chris Eubank Jnr’s ITV pay-per-view clash with Arthur Abraham,

The 29-year-old takes on Lithuanian journeyman Remigijus Ziausys as he puts a frustrating year of inactivity behind him.

That’s ahead of McIntyre’s English light-heavyweight title defence against Liam Conroy in September.

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The Leigh Park man has one eye on a showdown with British champ Frank Buglioni but McIntyre is first out to catch the eye of a wide audience.

He said: ‘It’ll be a heck of a statement if I do stop him because the likes of Derek Chisora and Dillian Whyte couldn’t do it.

‘But I’m looking to do a number on him and really shine.

‘He’s going to be durable but it’s a chance for me to really make my mark and show what I can do on a big stage.

‘It’s a case of shaking off the ring rust but I’m so eager to get in there and take him apart.

‘It’s a chance for me to do the business on a decent platform.’

McIntyre has been given a taste of the big time as one of Eubank Jnr’s main sparring partners ahead of his contest.

That’s whetted his own appetite to make progress.

He said: ‘It’s interesting. He’s a big name and I’ve got a lot more respect for him being around him.

‘He polarizes opinion and people either love or hate him but he’s definitely the real deal and I’ve seen that at close quarters.

‘The way he trains is inspiring and I’ve taken a lot from that.’

McIntyre is confident he has what it takes to dethrone his old sparring partner Buglioni – as and when the pair lock horns moving forward.

He said: ‘I looked at Buglioni the other day and I don’t think he’s improving. He has not improved at all.

‘He’s defended his title but I’m getting better all the time. People who watch me after not seeing me for a while are blown away by how much I’ve come on.

‘I can do that because I’ve got so much more to learn. I’m improving all the time.

‘Buglioni was saying his next fight will be his mandatory – which would be me.

‘I don’t know anything about that yet but I’m ready for it.

‘I’ll fight Conroy eight weeks from Saturday. I won’t have any time off and go straight back in.

‘That will be a British title eliminator and then I’ll be ready to go for that.

‘If they want to put a final eliminator on me I’ll go for that as well but I’m pushing on.’