Michael Conlan: Boxer 'doesn't care' about rematch with Vladimir Nikitin

Michael Conlan has won his opening 11 professional bouts
Michael Conlan will now face Diego Alberto Ruiz at Falls Park on 3 August

Michael Conlan says he will not chase Vladimir Nikitin after the Russian pulled out of their rematch.

Conlan, 27, was due to fight Nikitin at Falls Park in his native Belfast on 3 August before the Russian withdrew after tearing his bicep.

Nikitin beat Conlan in controversial circumstances at the Rio Olympics in 2016 but the Belfast fighter says he doesn't need to fight him again.

"I can move on with my career," Conlan told BBC Radio Ulster's Summer Club.

"That was probably a step back for me in terms of my progression. Everyone already knows I'm levels ahead of him as a professional."

He added: "Yes, the storyline was significant enough to do the Falls Park fight and get revenge, but it's no problem, I'm not going to chase it. I know I beat him but just didn't get the decision."

'I can beat any world champion'

The Belfast featherweight says he is "ultra prepared" for his fight against Nikitin's replacement Diego Alberto Ruiz, who boasts a 21-2 professional record.

"He's going to come in with a lot of confidence," added Conlan.

"But it doesn't matter, with the way I've been in training, I know what I need to do. I feel as though I have a bulletproof mindset so I'm really happy with where I am - right now, I feel like I could beat any world champion."

A crowd of 7,000 spectators is expected at the Feile an Phobail event in west Belfast as Conlan seeks his 12th professional win.

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