AFTER dominating the UK's premier boxing league last season, New Addington middleweight sensation Gareth Gardner says he is ready for another exciting year when he laces up the gloves this month for his return to action.
The 28-year-old carpenter secured his position as the number one competitor in the Queensbury Boxing League last season after winning all five of his league appearances on Sky Sports with some impressive displays.
But the likeable champion will face arguably his toughest assignment on Saturday, March 16, at the Epsom Downs Racecourse in Surrey, when he drops down a division to face British light middleweight Aaron Lowery in one of the biggest title clashes in the history of the competition.
But after claiming titles in three different weight divisions during his 18-month undefeated reign in the league, Gardner feels confident he will have all the tools necessary to add Lowery's title to his trophy cabinet when the pair meet.
"I'm really looking forward to facing Lowery next month and I'm very confident I've got the skills to beat him," commented Gardner.
"I had a blinding year in 2012 and had some tough fights which did take its toll on me, but I've had a nice break now and feel confident and ready to continue my winning streak starting on March 16."
"I've known Aaron for a while now after boxing on a number of the same events, and although I've got a lot of respect for him and his gym, that will all be left outside the ring come fight night as I'm coming to take his title."
Also appearing alongside Gardner on the bill will be fellow Queensbury champion Steve Orford, who will make the second defence of his Southern Area cruiserweight strap.
Orford was last in action back in September when he defeated Bournemouth challenger Louis Kerley in an all-action affair that featured as part of the league's main event show on British Eurosport.
But Orford will now face Brighton's big-hitting Mark Smith, nicknamed the Hammer, and he has promised the champion he will be facing his biggest challenge so far.
With the show promoters promising fight fans the most talent-packed line-up of boxing in their history, both Gardner and Orford look set to star on another big evening of action.