A BORDERS boxer has outlined his desire to become Scotland’s first heavyweight world champion ahead of his first fight in the division.

John McCallum, 35, will face the hard-hitting Isaac Munoz Gutierrez on March 30 in an explosive comeback bout.

The clash will take place in the 31-year-old’s homeland in Tijuana, Mexico.

But McCallum, who still owns a house in Galashiels, is feeling confident despite preparing to head into battle with someone “twice the size”.

“Basically he’s 380lbs so he’s a huge heavyweight,” said McCallum. “He’s a lot bigger than me, I walk around at 110kg (243lbs).

“I’m probably on the smaller side of the heavyweights having moved up from cruiserweight. It’ll be a nice introduction to the heavyweight division.”

He added: “I’m feeling good, I’m feeling strong. In the past I’ve always had to diet and kill myself to make weight, which I think took a bit away from my performance.

“Now I’m fully hydrated and I eat bigger portions of good food without having to worry about my actual weight on the night which is definitely going to make a difference.

“I feel the difference in my punch power and energy levels as well.

“If I’m walking around at my natural weight, I’m healthy, I’m strong and I’m fit, I should feel it in my performance, regardless of how big the opponent is.”

McCallum headed out to Cancun to acclimatise to the Mexican heat. He finishing his preparations in Las Vegas at the prestigious Top Rank gym – working with trainer Jamie Robinson – before heading to Tijuana.

There are rumours that a strong performance from McCallum could see a three-fight deal put on the table by US promoters Premier Boxing Champions (PBC).

The Scotsman said: “The winner of the fight could go on to get a big fight with an Andy Ruiz, a Deontay Wilder comeback fight or some big name which is attached to the PBC.

“It’s taking a risk, obviously, fighting a huge Mexican who’s from Tijuana in his backyard, but with that risk comes big reward. I feel it’s a good opportunity.”

He added: “I’m only chasing big fights, I’m not interested in boxing journeymen in local leisure halls. I’m interested in big fights that are going to give me recognition and reward.

“For me, it’s about achieving something in boxing. I still have aspirations of being a world champion.

“I figured if I come over here and beat Gutierrez then I get a big fight against someone like an Andy Ruiz or a Deontay Wilder and upset them, people are going to have to start taking notice.”

McCallum’s last bout was in August 2021 against Lewis van Poetsch.

Since then he has had a fight against three-time cruiserweight world champion Mairis Briedis, which he described as a chance to break into world class boxing, called off.

But McCallum batted away any potential concerns over ring rust.

“I’ve never been out the gym, I’m always sparring, always training,” he said. “I’ve been training a long time for this fight.

“I’m definitely not going to feel any ring rust. As soon as that bell goes I’m going to find my range right away. I’m feeling very confident.”

The Scot is hoping to use the country’s recent success on the international stage in football and rugby to spur him on in the ring.

He said: “It’s given me the aspiration to fly the flag for Scotland and become Scotland’s first ever heavyweight world champion.”