Liam Conroy will be stepping into his opponent’s back yard when he faces Belfast’s Steven Ward for a European title next month, but he believes him being a hometown boy will help the quality of the fight.

The 26-year-old Barrovian will be stepping into the ring for his third fight in the space of three months, as he looks to make up for lost time, following a 12-month injury-enforced absence that only ended in March.

He was defeated inside three rounds by former Olympian Joshua Buatsi for the British light-heavyweight title on that night, but he was since got back to winning ways with a second-round stoppage of veteran Elvis Dube last Saturday.

Within 24 hours of that bout, his next challenge was set, with Conroy slated as facing Ward at the Ulster Hall in Belfast in Friday, June 21 for the vacant WBO European light-heavyweight belt.

Conroy is very familiar with Ward, having sparred with him in the build-up to his clash against Buatsi and the Ulsterman will provide a stiff test, as he is undefeated in his 11 professional fights.

Conroy said: “We’ve sparred with each other a lot and we’ve done a lot of good rounds, so we know each other pretty well and I know he’s a fit, strong lad.

“It’s going to be a good fight with him - we’ve had some brilliant spars together and people would probably pay money to watch us spar.

“With it being at Ulster Hall and it being his home city, it’s going to give him a little extra boost and it will make for a great fight.”

Preston-based trainer Johnney Roye has worked hard with Conroy to get him back up to speed after his long absence from the ring and he looked sharp during his quick victory over Dube in Brentwood, where he knocked his opponent down three times in quick succession before the referee stopped the fight.

Conroy has no problem with his intense schedule over the last few months, saying: “I want to be boxing often.

“After the Buatsi fight, even though I got stopped, I loved every moment of it in there - the atmosphere and everything and I proper buzzed off it, so I thought I’d give it as much as I can.

“The bigger the fight it is, the better the feel, so I’ll be staying in the gym, staying fit and healthy and get in as many fights as I can and get myself back toward being one of the top lads in Britain.”