Chorley boxing star Jack Catterall is to return to a famous gym stateside as he ups his preparation for a likely world title shot in 2019.

The World Boxing Organisations’s No.1 contender at super lightweight could face champion Maurice Hooker as early as July. 

And this week he is back in Las Vegas and will train at the Floyd Mayweather gym where he has previously sparred with both the American great and Mexican star Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez. 

“I’m going over there for a few reasons and one of them is to check out who’s sparring down at the Mayweather gym,” Catterall said. 

“If there’s anyone up to the challenge, I’ll jump in.

“I’ve spoken to Hooker on social media and he seems keen to fight me so I’m really hoping there are successful negotiations and we get it on in July.

“I know I’ve got the best team behind me so in the meantime, I’ll just focus on my training, sparring the best fighters available and becoming the best fighter I can be so that when the shot comes, I don’t miss it.”

Catterall was last seen in action at Wembley Arena on April 27 when he blasted Oscar Amador aside inside three rounds, a fight designed to keep him sharp ahead of bigger challenges. 

The southpaw, also a former British champion, is now unbeaten in 24 fights as a professional and is confident Hooker wants to take him on and won’t find a way of avoiding him. 

“I’ve been waiting at the front of the queue for a shot at this world title for a long time now and I feel like I can reach out and touch it now,” the 25-year-old said.

“The next time I step in the ring under the lights, it could well be fighting for a world title.

“Hooker seems like a man who won’t duck a challenge. 

“Nobody welcomes a mandatory challenger – someone who’s forced their way into the position with performances – but I believe he wants to fight the best.”

Hooker won the title by outpointing Terry Flanagan at the Manchester Arena as he upset the home favourite with a split decision points win back in June 2018. 

The Dallas native has since defended his title against Alex Saucedo and Mikel LesPierre. The 29-year-old has 17 knockouts in his 26 wins.