Kell Brook feared he might never walk again, let alone defend his world title, after suffering a vicious knife attack last year.
The IBF welterweight champion sustained serious injuries and lost a lot of blood after being stabbed in the leg with a machete while on holiday in Tenerife last September.
The incident occurred just weeks after the Sheffield fighter had hit a career high by defeating Shawn Porter in Los Angeles to claim his world title belt.
There had been talk of glamour fights against the likes of Floyd Mayweather and Amir Khan but all that was put aside as Brook was left to battle back from a savage, possibly life-threatening, ordeal.
Now, having made a full recovery and announced a boxing comeback against Romanian Jo Jo Dan on March 28, the 28-year-old has spoken of his anguish following the attack.
Brook said: “It was the lowest part of my career. From winning the world title and being on cloud nine to the bottom of the ocean.
“Lying on that hospital bed, right next to a window, no-one speaking English. I was wondering if I would walk again, never mind fight. I did not know.
“But now I am great, very fit and healthy. My leg is bang on fine and I’ve worked hard.”
Brook had hoped to defend his title in December but any plans were shelved. He is now anticipating an emotional homecoming as he takes on the Canadian-based Dan at Sheffield’s Motorpoint Arena in just over two months’ time.
“It will be emotional,” said Brook, who boasts an unbeaten record from 33 professional fights, at a press conference to announce his next fight. “I’m training extremely hard in the gym and I am positive. I am healthy and ready to roll.
“I can’t wait to get in and defend my world title among the Sheffield fans and in Great Britain. I am undefeated and that is how I mean to go on.”
Dan, 33, is Brook’s mandatory IBF challenger, although the fight is a voluntary defence. Dan has won 34 of his 36 bouts and beat Canadian Kevin Bizier in his last outing in December.
Brook said: “He is number one contender for the title and a very tough customer. He comes to fight southpaw, he’s awkward and I’ll have to work hard. I’ll have my work cut out.”
With the mandatory defence out of the way, Brook would be free to pursue headline bouts with some of the sport’s bigger names should he see off Dan.
British rival Khan, holder of the WBC silver belt, is an obvious target but there could be other names in the frame.
Brook said: “I am not sure how long I will have to pick who I want, but I will be picking the hardest fights, the big fights, the massive fights for the summer - to fill an arena, a massive stadium.
“We are looking at the biggest names. Maybe the kid from Bolton, if he wants to do it. I am ready. (Juan Manuel) Marquez, (Marcos) Maidana - big names, exciting fights.
“I’m ready for some massive fights but don’t get me wrong, Jo Jo Dan is no walkover. He is a tough customer and he is coming to fight hard.”