Avni Yildirim says he has put his loss to Canelo Alvarez to the back of his mind and is now intent on winning a world title ahead of his clash with Jack Cullen on Saturday.
Yildirim was pulled out by then-trainer Joel Diaz after three one-sided rounds against unified super middleweight champion, Canelo at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami in February, as the Mexican took care of his WBC mandatory challenger.
The 29-year-old has since linked up with renowned coach Pedro Diaz, who has worked the corners of Miguel Cotto and Guillermo Rigondeaux and ‘Mr Robot’ insists this is a new chapter in his career.
“The Canelo fight is old news,” Yildirim said.
“I am looking to open a new page on my career down at middleweight. I have a new trainer in Pedro Diaz, it’s a new start and I have a new lease of life, everything feels good.”
The Turk faces former English middleweight titlist, Cullen at a catchweight of 164lbs on the undercard of Conor Benn’s showdown with Adrian Granados at Matchroom’s opening Fight Camp event.
The two-time world title challenger, who was stopped by Chris Eubank Jr in 2017 is confident he can become a world champion at 160lbs, with Gennady Golovkin (IBF), Demetrius Andrade (WBO), Jermall Charlo (WBC) and Ryota Murata (WBA) the current belt holders.
“I’m in a new gym, new atmosphere,” Yildirim added.
“Pedro is one of the best trainers in the world and a great guy, and I think that he can make me a world champion at 160lbs, and I’m telling the champions – I am coming for you.
“I know what I want to be, a great champion at middleweight, and Pedro believes in me and says that I can do it.
“My motivation is so high, and my body and my mind are both in a great place.”
Cullen climbed off the canvas to secure a dominant win over previously-undefeated prospect John Docherty in November and insists he is not reading too much into his opponent’s loss to the Mexican, pound-for-pound star.
“You can’t really go off Canelo, he’s a superstar isn’t he,” the 27-year-old said.
“Whoever he fights he beats! All I can take away from it is Yildirim is a tough and strong lad.
“He comes for a fight. It can only be an exciting scrap.”