Commonwealth light-heavyweight champion Lyndon Arthur was expecting to meet world-rated Anthony Yarde in July before the Covid-19 pandemic halted the boxing schedule, but the Mancunian is not looking past new foe Dec Spelman who he faces on July 31.

The all-action Spelman (16-3, 8 KOs) is rarely in a dull fight and promises to pose problems when they collide at the BT Sports studios in Stratford on a Queensberry Promotions show announced earlier on Thursday.

“Dec might have lost a couple of fights, but he leaves it in there and is a tough, come forward fighter, can take a shot and could be in there for the long haul,” said Arthur (16-0, 12 KOs).

“He is rock solid, but he hasn’t been hit off me. He hasn’t been in with anyone who hits as hard as I do. I am looking to knock him out.

“Boxing behind closed doors will be like an intense spar with little gloves on, trying to knock each other out,” he added. “Not to fight Yarde in July was initially a blow. I have not fought since October last year so it will be good to get out before the Yarde fight.”

Scunthorpe’s Spelman hopes to disrupt those best laid plans with the enforced hiatus arguably bolstering his chances of an upset.

“The chance of fighting Yarde is driving me on massively,” enthused Spelman, who balances his boxing career with a day job as a scaffolder. “Lyndon has the Yarde fight hanging over him, but if I win then I could get that fight and make life-changing money.

“Lyndon has power, but he is also elusive. I am not stupid enough to think I can outbox him. I have got to get in his face, rough him up, use my strength. I can whack a bit as well.

“He knows what I am going to do. I am going to meet him in the middle and we will see who comes [out] on top. This fight is a potential banana skin for him.”