GREENOCK boxer Frankie Monkhouse is aiming for a title tilt in 2014 after kicking off the year with an intensive training camp in Spain.

Frankie, 29, is back fresh from a week at a base near Alicante where he enjoyed sparring sessions with a Spanish champion and a world title contender.

The warm weather camp will help him get into shape for his next bout, which is scheduled for early March.

As well as losing weight and working on his fitness, the camp allowed Frankie, who comes from Quarrier Street, to test himself against top-class opposition.

During his stay, he faced off against Spanish champ Emiliano Casal and Irishman Dean Byrne, who is fighting for a world title next month.

Frankie has been inspired by his Spanish sojourn and is now setting his sights on winning a title of his own over the next 12 months.

He told the Tele: “This is a big year for me so this was the perfect start.

“I’m fighting on 8 March at York Hall against an opponent still to be named.

“This will be my first six-round fight, so it’s a real move up and will propel me right up the rankings and put me in a position to get into the title picture.

“It’s a big challenge though, and I’ll need everyone to turn out and support me more than before.

The boxer, who now lives and trains in the east end of London, flew out for the continental training camp with his full backroom team, including younger brother and former Scottish amateur champion Garry, 24, who is preparing for his own fight later this month in Wishaw.

In Frankie’s last bout, a November victory over Englishman Graham Fearn he was cheered on by more than 100 supporters from Inverclyde.

That sent him into the new year in fine fettle — and he was ready for his punishing foreign fitness sessions.

He said: “I was near Alicante for one-week, training three times a day.

“I ran at 8am, then it was training at 12 and sparring at 6pm. It was hard work but good weather.

“It’s good to get away into the warm weather and away from the distractions of home to fully concentrate on training and improving.

“I also enjoyed sparring with the Spanish fighters too, it was good to learn different styles.

“I’ve been sparring a few rounds with the Spanish champion Casal and Dean Byrne, who is fighting for a world title in Monaco in February.” Tickets to see Frankie in action in March are already on sale priced at £35 and they can be purchased by calling 07939 316898.

Frankie would like to thank his sponsors OLBG.