By Tom Podmore
The smooth-boxing Nottingham super-bantamweight lost a majority decision to Canadian lefty Steve Molitor in an attempt for the IBF 8st 10lb strap at the weekend, but is already planning a route back to a world title fight.
Booth, 32, boxed with credit in a fight that many expected him to be outclassed in. He cut the champion in the third and was probably edging the contest by a couple of points after the halfway stage.
But Molitor, who'd only been defeated by long-limbed Celestino Caballero in 33 professional outings entering the 12-rounder, showed the resilience of a two-time IBF super-bantamweight boss to grind out a result in the final six rounds of the fight.
Though the defeat is still raw, the gap-toothed Midlander now has the EBU belt on his mind.
Although a three-time European super-flyweight title challenger, Booth has yet to annex a belt he has the ability to wear with distinction.
All three losses are said to be controversial, all occurring in the back yard of his opponents - France (twice) and Spain - but this opportunity would more than likely take place on British or Irish shores.
The champion, Spain's hard-hitting and capable Kiko Martinez, crosses swords with Limerick's ten-fight unbeaten but untested Prizefighter champion Willie Casey in November and Booth can expect to meet the winner.
And '2 Smooth' revealed that the continental strap is new obsession. "I gave it a good go against Molitor but it wasn't enough to take the title back home with me on the night,” revealed Booth.
"Now I’d like to have a shot at a title I’ve been denied three times because of hometown decisions.
"I want that belt around my waist by next year and then we can see where the land lies regarding another shot at a world belt.”
"Who knows, I may never get another shot?" reasoned the former British, Commonwealth and IBO king.
"But I'm the mandatory for the European now and expect to be facing Martinez, as I think this has come a few fights too early for Casey, who is a good puncher.
"I'm already a bit excited for the chance and beating someone like the Spaniard, who has knocked out [future WBA champion Bernard] Dunne and lost to my mate Rendall Munroe [former EBU boss and who challenges for WBC title in Japan next month], will do my position no harm.”
"I was expected to knock it on the head after [the loss to] Molitor, but I’ve got titles to win before that," added the Frank Maloney-promoted, Tony Harris-trained box-fighter, who battled through alcoholism to duel with the best again.
"No-one would have said I would have been in this position a few years ago. I’m not giving up on winning a world title."