Nicola Adams thinks big by aiming to claim all four world titles

Nicola Adams is pictured sparring at The Trinity shopping centre, Leeds, ahead of her fight at Elland Road on Saturday (Picture: Steve Riding).
Nicola Adams is pictured sparring at The Trinity shopping centre, Leeds, ahead of her fight at Elland Road on Saturday (Picture: Steve Riding).
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LEEDS’S Nicola Adams believes she has set herself a realistic target of winning all four world championship belts in the professional flyweight division over the next two years before hanging up her gloves.

Ahead of her latest bout as a professional tomorrow evening, the 35-year-old former Olympic champion is not bothered which current world champion she faces first or how quickly, saying: “I’m coming for all the belts anyway, they may as well just step up now.”

The double Olympic champion will take in just the fourth fight of her career as a professional tomorrow.

She will be the chief supporting act on the undercard of the IBF featherweight world title fight between Leeds favourite Josh Warrington and belt holder Lee Selby at Elland Road.

Adams will take on Argentina’s Soledad del Valle Frias, who has had three world title fights in attempting – but failing – to win the flyweight WBA, WBO and IBF crowns.

The former two belts are held by Mexicans with Irma Sanchez the WBA champion and compatriot Arely Muciño holding the WBO crown.

Argentina’s Leonela Paola Yúdica is the current IBF belt holder.

Another Mexican fighter, Jessica Chávez, is the current WBC flyweight world champion, but Adams is taking inspiration from Ukrainian boxer Vasyl Lomachenko in believing she can snare all four belts within the next two years before retiring.

Like Adams, Lomachenko bagged gold at back-to-back Olympics having topped the podium in the featherweight division at Beijing 2008 before backing up as a lightweight at London 2012.

Lomachenko then took in a world title fight in just his second bout as a professional before becoming WBO world champion in only his third contest.

Expressing her own ambitious plans in the professional game, Adams told The Yorkshire Post: “I want to be a world champion and I want to unify all the belts.

“I want to do it all and I’ve said two years because I think I will be able to do it in two years.

“There could be other people going for belts so it might take a bit longer, but if everything goes well then why not two years? That’s a good timeframe I think.

“You look at the likes of Lomachenko and he went for a world title in his second fight and look at him now. I want to be just like that. Why not?”

Adams will again be a red-hot favourite to defeat her latest challenger tomorrow evening with the Leeds fighter returning to the ring after a difficult last year.

The boxer’s mother Dee was diagnosed with breast cancer in September and Adams then split with her fiancee Marlen Esparza last month.

“It’s been hard, especially with my mum,” admitted Adams. “It was tough when she first got diagnosed with breast cancer so that was a really, really tough blow for me.

“But she said to me, ‘I don’t want to hold you back, I want you to be able to work hard and train and achieve your goals’ and she said, ‘don’t worry, I will be there on Saturday night.’

“I said to myself, ‘okay, I’m going to do this, I’m going to train hard and I’m going to perform well so she knows that I’ve done exactly what she wanted me to do.”

Asked when she envisaged retiring, Adams declared: “I guess it just depends on how quickly I can get these belts.

“Everybody keeps saying to me, ‘who do you want first’ and I put the question to them, ‘who wants to face me first? I’m coming for all the belts anyway, they may as well just step up now.”