JOHN DUDDY can't afford to slip up when he takes on Mexico's Michael Medina over 10 rounds on the Pacquiao v Clottey undercard in Arlington, Texas tonight.
An impressive win will thrust him into a meeting with unbeaten Mexican Julio Cesar Chavez Jr in June, and keep him on course for a crack at Kelly Pavlik's WBC and WBO middleweight titles.
The Derryman has come back well from losing his unbeaten record to little-known Billy Lyell in April last year. He followed up a routine points win over Michi Munoz with a first-round dispatch of Juan Astorga.
"It looks like John is on a roll again and I believe I can get him to where he wants to be this year, and that's fighting for a world title," said the New York-based Irishman's manager, Craig Hamilton.
Medina, who calls himself 'Murder Man', has a good-looking record of 23 wins, 18 on stoppages, one loss and two draws. But he hasn't met anyone approaching world class.
Duddy will have to keep his guard tight against a strong puncher, something he hasn't always managed to do, but his solid jab and determined aggression should ensure a decisive points win.