Liam Williams wants to put behind a "nightmare" year as he bids to win the Commonwealth & British super-welterweight titles.
Williams, 23, returns to face Kris Carslow having been out for just over a year because of a hand injury.
One specialist told Williams it was career-ending but the Clydach Vale fighter is glad to be back in the ring.
"I want to get that British title and take one step at a time towards the bigger fights in the future," he said.
"It's been a bit of a nightmare of a year. I'm looking forward to be back now."
Undefeated Williams will face Scotland's Carslow at Manchester Arena on 19 December, his first fight since winning Commonwealth light-middleweight title in November 2014.
He won that title with a first round stoppage of Michael Lomax and says his first fight back in 13 months is a "big opportunity".
"British titles don't get much bigger so I'm really looking forward to it," Williams told BBC Wales Sport.
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"He's a lot more experienced than me and I can't really put my finger on the style he's got. He's a decent all-round boxer.
"I'll do my preparation and be ready for whatever he brings."
Williams hopes victory Carlslow will pave the way for an eventual fight against current WBO World Champion Liam Smith.
The Welshman was a mandatory challenger for Smith's British Light-Middleweight title in 2014 before he was denied by injuries.
Smith, 27, has since won the WBO world super-welterweight title and Williams would relish a shot at the Liverpool fighter.
"It's a fight which could happen in the next couple of fights down the line," Williams added.
"I don't see why he wouldn't want to fight me but I can't be talking about challenging for a world title yet.
"I'm only just coming back from a year out and I need to take one fight at a time and get a win on 19 December before I look at any other opponents."