Croydon boxer Rakeem Noble insists winning the Southern Area super lightweight title would be a big step in his career.

Noble will stake his claim for the coveted belt on Saturday night in a fight against Sohail Ahmad at York Hall.

The 26-year-old says securing the title would be a significant moment in his career and could lead to even bigger fights.

He said: “To win the title would be a big step, it would be my first major title.

“It could put me on the map and get people talking about me as a serious boxer.

“It would also be a stepping stone for bigger and better fights in the future. It’s a big fight for me and I can’t wait to get in the ring.”

Noble’s opponent, West Brompton’s Ahmad, has won all seven of his fights – including three knock-outs.

The boxing duo are familiar with each other having fought on the same shows and have even shared a locker room in the past.

Noble refused to be drawn into any pre-fight trash talk, but he did insist he was confident for a positive outcome.

“I’m pretty familiar with Sohail,” he said. “We’ve fought on the same show before so we’ve shared a locker room.

“I don’t want to get into trash talk or anything like that, but I’ll say this, I don’t think he’s anything that I can’t handle.

“He’s a good boxer but I’m feeling confident and ready for the fight.”

With just a few days until both fighters enter the ring at the Bethnal Green venue, Noble says his preparations have gone well.

He added: “I’ve had a really nice build-up, everything has gone well and I’m happy with where I am right now.

“There’s a couple of days before the fight and I’m just ticking over – it’s now about mixing it up with various exercises and pad work.

“The weigh-in is on Friday and for some fighters that’s a really big deal. But for me it’s just a formality - something you need to do before a fight.

“I won’t spend too much time with my opponent or in the crowd, I’ll just get in there and get it over and done with.

“Then it’s about getting it right in the ring.”

Video and pics: Natalie Mayhew