JOSH PRITCHARD savoured resounding success on his professional debut.
And the Purbrook puncher has targeted emulating his sparring partner, world champion Carl Frampton, after delivering an impressive win on his bow.
Pritchard caught the eye on the undercard to Frampton’s world title defence against American Chris Avalos in Belfast on Saturday.
The 20-year-old picked up a 40-36 points win over Aron Szilagyi at the Odyssey Arena.
Pritchard was always in control with his eye-catching hooks.
The multi-national finalist and England international almost finished Szilagyi early on with a body shot.
But the Hungarian lasted the course and provided Pritchard with a useful education, as he went the four-round distance for the first time.
Pritchard lapped up the occasion as he made the most of boxing at a huge event.
And he made no secret of his desire to emulate stable-mate Frampton’s success.
Pritchard said: ‘It was unbelievable. Absolutely unbelievable.
The atmosphere was second to none. I’ve never experienced anything like that before.Josh Pritchard
‘The whole occasion was fantastic.
‘To not only box but be ringside to see Carl Frampton defend his world title was something else.
‘The atmosphere was second to none. I’ve never experienced anything like that before.
‘It makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up.
‘After Carl boxed we were all in the ring. I stood there behind him and heard the crowd.
‘That’s where I want to be one day.
‘It was something really special.
‘That moment will make me work harder and strive to get there.’
Pritchard explained he followed instructions not to rush his work in an eagerness to catch the eye on his big night.
The former Moneyfields man stated he always felt comfortable on the big stage.
He said: ‘I opened the show, which was nice.
‘I got in there and didn’t rush anything.
‘A lot of boxers do rush things on their debut.
‘So I just got behind the jab and made the most of the occasion.
‘I hurt him early with a body shot and his knees went. He ran for his life after that.
‘He covered up well, which journeymen do.
‘He’d had a couple of wins on his record and, from what I saw of him before the fight, he liked to have a go.
‘That all changed after I got him in the first round.
‘I had a few comments about my body shots which were nice.
‘I’ve worked on that through my amateur career.
‘It’s good and I was happy with my performance.’
Pritchard isn’t planning on staying out of the gym for long now, after signing a deal with Barry McGuigan’s Cyclone Promotions outfit.
He said: ‘I’ll have a week off and chill out.
‘I will eat well still and then I’ll be back in the gym and ready to go again.
‘I’ll tick over, stay busy and live the life.
‘I’m in it and I’m in it to earn money and pick up titles.
‘I’m ready to live the life and stay busy.’