LUKE Watkins says the prospect of delivering a knockout performance back in his home town is all the motivation he needs as the Commonwealth cruiserweight champion prepares to fight in Swindon for the first time in almost a year.

Watkins makes his Swindon ring return on Saturday night at Trifecta Boxing’s ‘No Retreat, No Surrender’ show at the MECA.

The 28-year-old, who is trained by Paddy Fitzpatrick at his Ferndale Road Gym, has not fought in his home town since a fourth round technical knockout victory over Czech opponent Jiri Svacina last April.

Since then, Watkins has hit illustrious heights elsewhere, claiming the Irish title in Belfast before winning and then retaining the Commonwealth crown at bouts at the iconic York Hall in London and the Leicester Arena.

As well as seeing a belt on the line, Watkins’ last two outings have been broadcast live on TV on Freeview channel Five Spike.

Saturday’s fight – against an as yet unconfirmed opponent – may have something of a more modest feel about it but Watkins is determined to put on a good show.

“For me, this is glamourous, it is my home town and my home crowd. That definitely motivates me,” said Watkins.

“No matter what, I look for the lesson and the blessing in any situation and the fact that I am in front of thousands of people in my home town means I have got to be on my A game.

“It has been a while since I fought in Swindon, so I am really looking forward to it.

“My fans from Swindon have travelled around with me and stayed loyal, following everywhere I go, so it is nice to be able to do fight in my home town for them. I want to put on a show.”

Although the withdrawal of potential opponents is not ideal for Watkins in the build-up to the fight, that has not dampened the spirits of the former Swindon New College student.

“We have had two opponents pull out but there is a big, big list to go through. We want a good fight, so we are whittling it down to find the best available opponent,” said Watkins.

“There are a lot of people busy at the moment with a few TV shows going on. The opponent is still to be confirmed but I am 100 per cent fighting.

“If there is one thing I know I am going to do it is make sure I knock someone out and give a great performance.”

A potential clash between Watkins and British champion Matty Askin has long been mooted, although the latter is due to defend his title against Stephen Simmons in a fortnight’s time.

Once their respective bouts are out of the way, Watkins is keen to make the prospective Askin meeting a reality.

“He has got to deal with March 17 first and I have got to deal with this weekend,” said Watkins.

“I have put that out of the forefront of my mind. I have put it to one side but after this fight I will start stoking that fire. He wants the fight and I want the fight, so let’s make it happen.”