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Okolie ready for British title fight

PUBLISHED: 14:00 21 September 2018

Lawrence Okolie has already won the WBA continental and Commonwealth cruiserweight titles this year (pic: Adam Davy/PA)

Lawrence Okolie has already won the WBA continental and Commonwealth cruiserweight titles this year (pic: Adam Davy/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

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Lawrence Okolie plans to take another step towards his own world champion dream when he takes to the ring at Wembley Stadium on Saturday night.

The Stoke Newington-born bruiser faces Matty Askin for the British cruiserweight title on the undercard of Anthony Joshua’s defence of his world heavyweight titles against Russia’s Alexander Povetkin.

The 25-year-old has already won the WBA continental title and the Commonwealth belt this year and sees British strap as the next step on his way to global glory.

“My ultimate goal is to be the unified world champion and I want to go down the traditional route: clean up domestically and prove to myself and the fans that I belong at that level,” he said.

“Matty is a very experienced fighter who is ranked in the top 10 in the world.

“I want to make my way towards the world scene and so I need to be able to beat people like Matty to do that.

“I’ve won the Commonwealth title in my first two years and I want to keep that trajectory going by winning the British title and hopefully winning a world title before the next Olympics.”

Okolie’s promoter Eddie Hearn added: “Lawrence is continuously surprising me with his desire to step up, but this is by far his biggest jump.

“I rate Askin very highly and he has shown much improvement in his last couple of fights. This is another genuine 50-50 fight for the undercard.”

* Light heavyweight Anthony Yarde is set to return to action when he headlines a Frank Warren show at the Brentwood Centre on October 20.

The 27-year-old has been out of the ring since stopping Dariusz Sek at The O2 Arena in June, giving a successful defence of his WBO European and inter-continental titles.

Yarde’s next opponent is to be confirmed, but is sure to be a dogged fighter capable of testing the Hackney-born boxer’s world title credentials.

The full card, which is still to be confirmed, is set to be screened live on BT Sport and will include plenty of local talent.

But Yarde will hope that he can grab all the headlines as the star of the show.

Additional reporting by Ken Sellek.

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