By Elliot Foster
Paul Butler has issued the clearest indication yet that a world title fight is on the horizon.
The Ellesmere Port bantamweight will return to the ring on April 8, but he is hoping that a victory will pave the way for an all-British showdown for global honours.
Butler (23-1, 12 KOs) is scheduled for a 10-round outing at Manchester Arena, exclusively live on BT Sport and BoxNation.
And a long-awaited clash with WBA ‘regular’ bantamweight titlist Jamie McDonnell is set to be confirmed, providing the 28-year-old has his hand raised on the night.
“What I’m hearing [is that] it’s close,” he told Bunce’s Boxing Hour when asked about the potential of a fight with the Doncaster man, who has been been involved in seven world title fights.
“Apparently contracts have been sent out, so hopefully they can get signed and sent back to us and then I’ll 100 percent be signing it.”
Although there is no concrete information regarding the date for the fight, Butler went on to say that it would likely be ‘this side of the summer’.
McDonnell, 30, was last in action against Liborio Solis in Monte Carlo back in November. On that night, he controversially retained his belt.
Solis and his team made a complaint to the WBA about the fight and the scorecards handed in, which were 116-112, 115-113 and 117-111, leading to the Boxing Association ordering an immediate rematch.
And although the rematch with Solis has been ordered, former IBF bantamweight king Butler –– whose sole loss as a pro came at the hands of former IBF super-flyweight king Zolani Tete back in April 2015 –– is confident that the fight with McDonnell (29-2-1, 13 KOs) will be made sooner rather than later.
“I’ve never sparred with him,” he continued. “I’ve been down to watch him spar with lads we’ve had in the past but I’ve never stepped a foot in the ring with him myself.
“It makes you train a little bit harder when you can see something at the end of the line.”
You can watch Paul Butler’s appearance on Bunce’s Boxing Hour from Friday, March 24, 2017 at http://bit.ly/2mJDJL1.