An unbeaten boxer from Liverpool has set his sights on world domination within three years.

James Heneghan, 25, from Liverpool holds an unblemished record. He picked up his 11th professional victory against Lukasz Barabasz in Knowsley Leisure Centre on April 26th.

The current world champions and potential opponents in the super-middleweight division are Janibek Alimkhanuly (WBO and IBF champion), Erislandy Lara (WBA champion) and Carlos Adames (WBC champion).

Watch Luke Davies’ interview below:


Heneghan told MerseySportLive: “If I keep winning, I feel like then them fights (world title bouts) will come quickly. You don’t move backwards from title fights. Even if you lose (a title fight) you win the next one and then you get another shot. That’s what’s going to happen for me.”

Heneghan trains at Four Corners Combat Gym in Fazakerley a suburb of north Liverpool. His training partners include a plethora of prospects and world champions with experience that, no doubt, he can call on for advice.

Coach John Gillies rules the roost in the gym and ensures all of his fighters have set training times and regimes to get them in optimal shape for each fight. Other coaches include former world-level boxer Stephen Smith who recently retired after an illustrious career which spanned over a decade.

Despite his perfect record, some fans have questioned his power as the scouser sports just one knock-out victory in the professional ranks. However, this is not a worry for Heneghan, who believes his power will soon show.

(Video courtesy of Queensberry Promotions)

“It’s always about going in and getting the win. With my style, the knockouts only come when people come to fight. Sometimes against journeymen that I’ve fought early on in my career, they go into their shell. 

“I’m not going to be reckless to just get them out of there. I know from sparring that when I hit people, I can hurt them.

“When I step up the levels, you’ll probably find I’ll get more knockouts.”

Heneghan is currently promoted and managed by Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotions. The company oversaw Tyson Fury, Ricky Hatton and Naseem Hamed’s quest for world honours.

“I am still under contract with Frank (Warren); I’ve got over a year left (on his contract) with Frank. We’ll be looking to stay with him, that’s the plan.

“Just because Boxnation is launching again, that’s sort of where Frank started. About three fighters on the card on Friday were promoted by Frank.”

(Credit: Luke Davies)

Title ambition

Stoke hero Nathan Heaney holds the coveted Lonsdale belt in the middleweight division. Heneghan is eyeing the bout in the near future. The fight should be simple to make with both men sharing a promoter.

“I think the British Champion Nathan Heaney; most fighters want to be fighting for British titles. I’m not different, that’s a fight that I’d love to make.”

Heaney is a superstar in his own right and famous for his cult following due to his association with Stoke City Football Club. The 35-year-old is popular among fans for his flamboyant ring entrances accompanied by Tom Jones’ song ‘Delilah’ which always cranks up the noise in any venue on fight night.

“I know Queensberry and Frank Warren have told me they want to make it in the future. I know he’s got a big opportunity fighting in Stoke soon, whatever happens, I’m going to be in the position. If I keep winning hopefully it gets ordered by the British Boxing Board.”

Heneghan is under no illusion that he may have to wait for his dream title shot but is still keen on securing other belts before his showpiece night.

“You don’t always get what you want. The British title is still the main aim but the way boxing works you never know what can happen. We are going to look at some sort of title next and hopefully a good fight.

“I’d aim for an international title, something like that would lead to a good world ranking with the governing bodies. It’s like a foot in the door.”

The super middleweight Liverpudlian believes he will relish being the underdog against Heaney. The fight is likely to take place in Stoke with a possibility of the Bet365 Stadium as the venue.

“The moment the fight was mentioned to me I wanted it to be in Stoke. I’m not going to get a chance to fight with an atmosphere like that anywhere else; that many people screaming against you. I always perform under pressure.”

Coping with injury

His fledgling career has come with challenges. The fighter sustained two serious hand injuries over the past year stalling his career at a time of promise. Now, he is fit and raring to get back among the contenders.

“I had months out of the ring. So, it’s been a long time to not have been active and I wanted to shake the rust off. 

“I only had an operation six or seven weeks ago; I’ve been punching with it (the hand) for five weeks. It felt strong. I want to be in big fights soon. 

“I slipped in the gym and done all the ligaments in my hand but I stayed in the gym and done shadow boxing and one-handed boxing.

“I didn’t want it to take over my life. Unfortunately, I went back (to the doctors) in January and they wanted me to have surgery. I got that done in March.”

Although Heneghan is a full-time athlete, he allowed himself a cheat meal after his most recent win.

“I love a big pizza and some brownies, it was deserved.”

Heneghan explained how he was straight back into training the week after his fight.

“My hands were still a bit swollen, so I’m sort of still letting them get back to full health. Then, I can get back to punching properly and back sparring soon.

“You just know (when they are recovered), today I threw a few shots in on the pads and they felt a bit sore. You build back up and then you get there.”

The prospect is expected to receive news of his next opponent and world ranking in the coming weeks.

(Background image: Luke Davies)