BOXING: Michael Conlan is ready for Chicago encounter

Michael Conlan
Michael Conlan

Michael Conlan knows he will have to be on his guard when he takes to the ring in Chicago on Friday night.

The Belfast fighter will face Alfredo Chanez in his second fight as a professional and he knows that with all the hype that surrounded his debut at Madison Square Garden, other fighters will be looking to derail the Conlan bandwagon.

“I’m a name so they are going to want to take me out, so I am just going to have to be ready and I am.

“The guys I have been sparring are going to be a lot harder than this and that’s the simple truth.

“I have been sparring world champions and doing well, so I just have to go in there and focus on myself and not the opponent.”

And Conlan says fans will see a much improved fighter from his first pro outing in New York.

“There is a lot less pressure this time, so I’m able to just concentrate on the fight and enjoy myself.

“I don’t have to worry about anything else, worry about the event because last time I had to worry about too many things.

“This time I know there is a lot less pressure, so I have enjoyed it a lot more and I’m just looking forward to producing a good performance now.

“I did relax last time and enjoy myself, but my performance wasn’t relaxed because I was trying to impress too much.

“This time I’m just focussing on being relaxed and perform, not rush anything.

“Place my shots, don’t just wing them, so I’m really looking forward to this and showing people what I am capable of,” added Conlan.