Natasha Jonas hopes for a massive homecoming fight against Hannah Rankin in Liverpool as she waits to see whether her Scottish rival will set up a world title unification clash.
The 37-year-old fighter won the vacant WBO super-welterweight title with a sensational stoppage of Christian Namus in Manchester in February and now wants to unify the division.
Rankin became the WBA and IBO champion at 154lbs in November and will make her first defence of the belts against Mexican Alejandra Ayala at Glasgow’s Hydro Arena on May 13.
“We’re waiting to see the outcome of her fight,” Jonas said to Sky Sports News. “The ranking fight is a fight we both want, and we both believe we can win, so it’s exciting times.
“The whole point of moving up the weight divisions was to give myself options and I do believe that I’ve got that now.”
Initial talks have started to take place and Jonas shared more about potential locations for the unification clash.
“I’d do it anywhere. The idea is to do it, maybe like a homecoming for me in Liverpool. She’s having her homecoming for this fight in the Hydro Arena.
“But, I’m not really bothered where I have it to be honest. A fight is a fight, it doesn’t make any difference.
“I’ve gone to people’s backyards before, and it doesn’t make any difference to me.”
Jonas is a fighter packed with resilience, something shown by becoming a world champion at the third time of asking. Prior to her stoppage of Namus, she’d fallen short against Terri Harper and Katie Taylor.
“I don’t think I’ll ever tire of hearing that I’m a world champion; it’s something I’d set my heart on,” Jonas said.
“I kept on promising myself I was good enough, telling myself I was good enough and telling the world I was good enough. I was just being beaten to the post and not making it.
“It’s hard to keep doing that, picking yourself up and going for the next one when it’s not happening. Luckily enough, I showed a bit of resilience, and I got the just rewards in the end.”
I feel like now I can go back to enjoying boxing because I’ve got what my heart desired. I’m not saying that I don’t want to unify and win more, but I know that I’ve reached the level I said and told myself I was good enough to do. I’ve got that now so everything else is a bonus.
Jonas previously shared her daughter Mela’s involvement in the Harper camp when the UK had gone into lockdown.
“Joe (Gallagher, Jonas’ trainer) would give her a job for the day in the gym! She was counting reps and giving me water during rounds. She always knew what her mum does. But she never knew what I did when I got there. Now, she appreciates it.”
Now, Mela will be back in the gym during the Easter holidays and continuing to check that Jonas is doing the right number of reps!
“It’s nice to share those experiences with her,” Jonas said. “After her involvement in the Harper camp, it was nice for her to see mummy coming home with a belt. It’s been her and my nan who has it the most now!
“I actually went into her school earlier this week and gave a little talk. I’m not anyone who is trying to change the world, I’m just trying to change my little part of it.”