BOXING: Paddy Barnes is looking to keep on moving towards World title shot

Belfasts Jamie Conlan and Paddy Barnes
Belfasts Jamie Conlan and Paddy Barnes
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Paddy Barnes is in the fast lane to a World title shot as he fights Silvio Olteanu for the WBO European title in the Waterfront Hall in Belfast on June 17.

Barnes will contest for the belt in only his third fight as a professional and the flyweight says he is not messing about.

“My first two fights were against journey men and they were awful fights but I battered them.

“Now I want something meaningful and I am really looking forward to fighting this guy and he has had a few European title fights and he has also fought for a World title.

“I want the big fights and there is no need to hang about,” he said.

And Barnes says fight fans will see a new and improved fighter on the night.

“I am trying to slow down a wee bit and put more power into my punches. I will be trying to sit down a wee bit more on my punches and generate more power.

“And my first two fights were in Belfast and it is all about pleasing the fans.

“And at the end of the day this is a business and you have to impress and build your fan base.

“In my first two fights I might have tried a wee bit too hard but this time I am fighting a seasoned opponent so I have to cut-out the mistakes.

“I have watched him a few times and he likes to come forward. He will come to fight and I hope he does.”

And Barnes knows a win at the Waterfront gets him closer to a fight with WBO World champion Zou Shiming.

“The belt means very little to me but a win gets me ranked in the top 15 by the WBO and Shiming is ranked at number one. That is the fight I want and I am determined to get there.”

Stephen Ormond, David Oliver Joyce, Steven Ward, Lewis Crocker and Jamie Conlan will also appear on the bill and Conlan is hoping to get a World title shot before the end of the year.

“I like to fight with a little bit of fear inside me because it gives me a wee bit more adrenaline for the fight.

“This is an eight round fight - but it could be a banana skin and I have to look at every fight as a World title encounter.”