WBA ‘Regular’ champion Can Xu will be watching when featherweight rival Josh Warrington faces unsung Mexican Mauricio Lara at the SSE Arena in Wembley tonight. Xu has insisted he will take the Yorkshireman’s unbeaten record should their paths cross later this year, as is widely expected.

A high-octane clash between Xu and Warrington has been close to fruition in recent times with the Leeds favourite irked when the Chinese champion, signed with Golden Boy Promotions in America, withdrew from the proposed bout due to the current Covid-19 restrictions preventing fans from attendance.

Warrington subsequently relinquished his IBF title to pursue other champions, rather than go over old ground and rematch mandatory challenger Kid Galahad who he pipped on points in June 2019.

Assuming Warrington (30-0, 7 KOs) defeats Lara on Saturday night, a showdown with Xu (18-2, 3 KOs) seems highly likely and the WBA title-holder believes there will only be one outcome.

“I’m confident that I will be the one who ends Josh’s undefeated record,” Xu told Sky Sports. “A fighter should always believe he can win and keep this big heart from the start until the end. 

“I know a lot of boxing fans don’t believe that I can stop Josh’s record, it doesn’t matter. I’d like to show those people who look down on me what I can do, just like I did every time away from home.

“Speed and incessant punching are my best weapons but Josh has them, too. We are both warriors and we also have best teams. That’s why I don’t think there’s a big gap between us. The key to victory is not the skills, it’s about our heart. Who has a stronger heart is who wins the fight.”