Jason Quigley figured he would have to hit the road for his first major title fight.

What the Irish middleweight contender didn’t expect was the opportunity to pull the crowd versus a long-reigning titlist fighting in his home region. Such appears to be the case for Quigley, who has drawn his share of supporters ahead of his bid versus WBO middleweight titlist Demetrius Andrade. The fight takes place this Friday live on DAZN atop a four title-fight show from SNHU Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire, roughly two hours from Andrade’s hometown of Providence, Rhode Island and an hour away from Irish-heavy Boston.

“Whenever I say I’m fighting [less than an hour] from Boston and in my accent, the first thing people automatically think is that I’m going to draw the crowd,” Quigley told BoxingScene.com. “All of the Irish in the area will come to support me.”

Of course, the crowd can only do so much to rally support.

“I’ve boxed all around the world, fought in hostile environments,” notes Quigley, who has three in a row since his lone career defeat. “Eastern Europe, Russia, Kazakhstan, you name it. It really doesn’t affect my performance whether everyone is an Andrade fan or everyone is rooting for the Irish.”

Quigley (19-1, 14KOs) hails from Ballbofey, Ireland but has fought almost exclusively in the United States since turning pro in July 2014. All but one U.S. fight has taken place outside the U.S. West Coast, coming in March 2018 when Quigley knocked out Daniel Cruz in the sixth round among friends at Marina Bay Sportsplex in Quincy, Massachusetts, approximately 90 minutes from Friday’s fight location.

More important to Quigley, though, is the experience gained on the road to title contention.

The opportunity versus Andrade (30-0, 18KOs)—a 2008 U.S. Olympian and two-division titlist who attempts the fifth defense of his WBO middleweight title—comes six months after Quigley claimed a ten-round majority decision over second-generation boxer Shane Mosley Jr. this past May at Michelob ULTRA Arena in Las Vegas. He was on his own that evening and managed to leave with arguably his biggest win to date.

Whether a few more cheers will come with his first title challenge will be embraced, though not mandatory for what he ultimately plans to accomplish.

“It doesn’t matter to me, when and where the fight is,” notes Quigley. “Once that bell rings, all that matters is who is the best fighter. On (Friday), I’m facing the best middleweight in the world, with the goal to become the new middleweight champion of the world.”

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox