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Kevin Mitchell

The East Londoner has fought for a world title before and admits his second wind could bring him back to the very top...

Last Updated: 16/05/14 2:58pm

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Kevin Mitchell could be facing his last chance to become a world champion after reviving his exciting career in recent years.

Mitchell turned professional in 2003, not long after winning a senior ABA title at the age of 18, and racked up a run of victories.

The Dagenham fighter was a class above his early opponents and took the Commonwealth title on points against George Ashie, his 22nd straight win, but tougher battles lay ahead.

Carl Johanneson, a dangerous puncher, agreed to defend his British belt against Mitchell in March 2008.

The pair delivered a thrilling contest, with Mitchell choosing to stand his ground during some brutal rounds.

Johanneson's resistance finally broke in the ninth as the east Londoner forced a memorable stoppage win.

Big fights appeared to beckon for Mitchell, who halted Walter Estrada on his American debut in Atlantic City, but a serious hand injury swiftly stalled his progress, keeping him out of the ring for nearly a year.

Cleared to return, Mitchell needed to make up for lost time, although concerns were raised about his willingness to face Amir Khan's conqueror, Breidis Prescott, in May 2009.

The Colombian had blown away Khan inside a round, but Mitchell's clever back-foot boxing kept Prescott at bay in an impressive points win.

The facts

nFrom: Dagenham
Born: October 29, 1984
Age: 29
Nickname: The Hammer
Division: Lightweight
Stance: Orthodox
Height:5' 8"
Fights: 39
Won: 37
Lost: 2
Drawn: 0
KO: 27 (69.23%)

It was time for Mitchell to mix at world level and he would challenge Michael Katsidis for the WBO interim belt in May 2010.

The stage was set for Mitchell to shine at Upton Park Stadium, in front of his local support, but he froze in the spotlight - Katsidis came out firing from the first bell and a shell-shocked Mitchell was halted on the ropes in the third round.

Granted

A 14-month absence from the ring followed this first defeat, raising doubts about Mitchell's future, and a return bout against British rival John Murray would test his desire for the sport.

Mitchell rose to the challenge in July 2011, steadily breaking down the tough Mancunian, who was pounded to a halt in the eighth round.

Mitchell was back amongst the big-names in British boxing and would be granted a world title shot against Scotland's WBO champion Ricky Burns in September 2012.

Yet again the Londoner would fall short on the big occasion and was floored twice before the fight was waved off in the fourth round.

Forced to reassess his career, Mitchell decided to link up with promoter Eddie Hearn and was reunited with old trainer Tony Sims.

Under the watchful eye of Sims, Mitchell has rediscovered his best form and a series of victories have led him to within touching distance of another world title shot.

Mitchell will face Ghislain Maduma in an IBF lightweight title eliminator on May 31st at Wembley Stadium.

Failure is not an option for the Londoner if he is going to land one more shot at a world champion.

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