Home comforts! Callum Johnson can’t wait for his ring return in Scotland

Callum Johnson.
Callum Johnson.

As Callum Johnson prepares to return to his ‘second home’, the Boston boxer is focusing solely on his eighth tick in the win column.

The light heavyweight will go toe-to-toe with Nathan King at Glasgow’s Braehead Arena on Friday.

But the return north of the border is certainly something Johnson is relishing.

Last month he fulfilled his ambition of fighting in his native Lincolnshire, celebrating in style with a second-round victory against Lithuanian Egidijus Kakstys.

Indeed, Johnson will return to North Hykeham for his second bout in Yellowbelly county on September 27.

But first he will return to the Braehead Arena, the place where his professional career began.

“It will be my fourth fight there, and I’ve boxed in front of 5,000 people there before - so it will be nothing new to me,” Johnson - who recently spent eight rounds sparring with Carl Froch in the build-up to his bout - told The Standard.

“The only thing new to me will be the opponent.

“Of course, I’m a Lincolnshire lad born and bred and I want to fight on shows here, but Scotland feels like a second home to me.”

It was the Scottish Amateur Boxing Association who saw the promise in Johnson, who qualifies through his Caledonian grandmother.

And the light heavyweight repaid the nation’s faith in 2010 when he won them Commonwealth Games gold in Delhi.

Therefore, there were few eyebrows raised when Johnson made his professional debut in Glasgow, where he defeated Philip Townley.

Since then, the Bostonian has returned to the Braehead Arena to record victories against Jody Meikle and Tommy Tolan.

“It will be good to get back to Scotland, the fans there have been great to me over the years,” Johnson continued.

“Scottish boxing, especially Scottish amateur boxing, will always have a massive place in my heart because of everything the country has done for me.

“I still get messages of support from Scotland all the time, and it means a lot to me.”

King, a 33-year-old Welshman, has a record of 14 victories and 22 defeats to date.

And with some of those defeats coming against top names such as Tony Jeffries, James DeGale and Kenny Anderson, he certainly has plenty of experience to offer.

But Johnson - who has won all seven of his pro bouts - has no fear.

He added: “He’s a good fighter but if I’m on top of my game then I don’t think I’ll have anything to worry about.

“I’ve got to make sure I concentrate on my job, getting myself into the best shape I can.

“Because if I can box to the best of my ability I’m always confident in what I can do.”

Johnson will meet King on the undercard of Ricky Burns’ world title eliminator against unbeaten Montenegrin Dejan Zlaticanin.

The night’s action will also be broadcast live on Sky Sports.