DENNIS MCCANN CAN show on Friday just why he has long been considered one of the most elite young talents in world boxing.

Our super bantamweight prodigy takes a significant step up in class by taking on the redoubtable, rough and rugged Ionut Baluta for the WBO Intercontinental title. It really could prove to be a coming of age fight for the Haribo-munching 22-year-old.

The Menace turned over with us at just 18 to something of a fanfare, taking into account his amateur accomplishments, but we obviously had to factor in his age and experience as we matched him along the way.

The risk-levels have increased in recent times and, across his last three fights, he has won championship belts and secured impressive stoppages against the likes of James Beech Jr and the vastly experienced Joe Ham.

There can be no disputing that Ionut Baluta provides a serious threat.

This is the sort of fight that will tell us so much. It will illustrate clearly, we hope, if Dennis is ready to push on and become a genuine world level contender and vindicate the huge faith we have invested in him over the last four and a bit years.

Baluta is the sort of fighter who won’t let any opponent have it all his own way, so there will be spells in the fight where Dennis could have to come through some adversity. This is all part of the learning process and no bad thing.

He also gets to headline on Friday and this is another reason why these York Hall shows are of such great value to our young fighters. It provides a stepping stone towards the grander occasions but, more importantly, they get to experience being the main event or sampling the premium television slots.

It means they are less likely to suffer from stage fright when they enter the serious business end, plus these are also cracking little shows for the punters who pack the place out.

There aren’t too many events at York Hall where you have a WBO Intercontinental title, British and Commonwealth and two WBC International belts being fought for on the same night.

This is what we have got on Friday and, for the British and Commonwealth affair, we welcome the featherweight champion Nathaniel Collins to the Queensberry ranks, with his debut fight coming against Raza Hamza, who we know will not be coming to make up the numbers.

It should be a real humdinger and we will see whether Nathaniel will soon be able to join our man Nick Ball in the world scene, with the Scouse wrecker now installed at No.1 in the rankings with the WBC.

Our current First Lady Raven Chapman is also in action with a second defence of her WBC belt against Lila Furtado, an unbeaten Brazilian with a few fights more on her clock than Raven.

Raven wants the tough fights and, if they come and meet her in the middle, so much the better. It is what she enjoys and hopefully Furtado will oblige.

Should Raven emerge victorious, as we anticipate, the plan is for her to fight for the WBC Interim world featherweight title next time out. That will really put her in the mix and in line to take on the likes of Amanda Serrano.

Last but not least when it comes to the title fights, I am particularly looking forward to seeing Ryan Garner fight for a first championship belt, with the coveted WBC International super featherweight title on the line when he takes on Juan Jesus Antunez.

The Piranha is another who has been with us from the start and some big names said straight away that he was destined for the very top, such was the impact he made.

Ryan will admit himself that he went through a career wobble and lost his focus for a period of time but now, at 25, he is probably the most switched on young boxer you could hope to come across.

He is stronger, wiser and more mature nowadays, poised to make his strike for the top. I am personally thrilled to see him working so hard to set himself and his young family up and I cannot wait to see him, hopefully, win his first belt of many and quickly close in on the big guns of the super featherweight division.