AQIB Fiaz believes he made the best of a difficult 2020 as he bids to make further strides on the big stage this year.

The Lees boxing prospect, who has won all six of his professional fights, ended the year having appeared twice on Sky Sports and signed to Eddie Hearn’s major Matchroom stable.

The 21-year-old super-featherweight came out on the right end of a mini-rivalry with the experienced Kane Baker in October as he continues to progress under the tutelage of former British and European light-middleweight champion Jamie Moore.

Now he will have his sights set on progressing towards titles in 2021.

“The start of the year I just wanted a chance on a big show,” Fiaz told VIP TV.

“I ended up getting on and signing with a big promotional company.

“For me, it’s been a successful year really. The only box we couldn’t tick that we wanted to was the level of activity which we couldn’t control anyway really.

“It’s not been so bad, there’s positives more than negatives.”

The fight with Baker was initially set for September only for Fiaz to pull out through illness on the eve of the contest at Matchroom’s Fight Camp, held outdoors in the grounds of the company’s headquarters in Brentwood, Essex.

That riled the Birmingham man but after plenty of verbal shots were fired, Fiaz put in an impressive display to take an eight-round points decision behind closed doors in Milton Keynes.

It was a result that looked all the more impressive when Baker returned to the ring less than two weeks later to beat the previously unbeaten Meshech Speare.

“In my opinion I got the better version of him,” he said.

“I know when I boxed him he had a full 10-week camp and apparently he didn’t train for two weeks after I beat him and then got the fight on a few days’ notice and took it.

“I was happy with the performance but it’s on to bigger and better things next year.

“It’s down to Steve (Wood, manager), Eddie and Jamie who is put in front of me and I’ll be ready.

“I know the competition is going to step up so I need to step my game up.”

When Fiaz will return is not clear with the British Boxing Board of Control having suspended activity in January due to the rising number of coronavirus cases nationally.

Promoter Hearn has however said he is willing to take shows abroad.