Gorbals fighter Joe Ham has had a taste of the big stage as an amateur, and has loved his experience of the media spotlight when boxing on the undercards of friend Ricky Burns’s high-profile bouts.

But the 26-year-old’s New Year’s resolution is to become the main attraction in his own right, after rounding off 2017 by maintaining his perfect record as a professional.

For Ham, his thirteenth pro triumph represented a watershed moment in his career, and he now feels ready to mount a serious challenge for titles in 2018.

“I think the fight in December will be my last six-rounder,” said Ham. “I feel like I’m past that level now and I just want to fight for titles now.

“It’s time for me to progress and move on. That was just the last one to finish it, but I rounded off the year with a win and now I want to step it up.

“We’ll see what the first couple of weeks of the year brings, and hopefully I’ll find out soon what fights are available.

“I’d like to fight for as many titles as I can. I want to fight for a Commonwealth or a British title, but any title that presents itself to me I’ll snap up.

“All the learning fights are over with now, it’s time to put it to good use and fight for whatever comes my way this year, and I’m sure I will get some big fights.

“I’ve experienced a lot of boxing on big stages as an amateur, so it’s not new to me, and that’s half the battle.

“If you can handle the occasion, then getting into the ring is the easy bit. A lot of people freeze, but I’m ready to snap up that opportunity when it comes my way.”

Ham feels that one of his most impressive showings to date came in the Manchester Arena last year when he fought on the Burns versus Anthony Crolla undercard, and he is dreaming of the day that his name is at the top of such a bill.

And it is goals like those that keep him going through the gruelling training regimes that he fits in around his full-time job as a joiner.

“The experience in Manchester was something a wee bit different,” said Ham. “You’re used to being up here with your own crowd where everyone knows who you are.

“Down there, nobody knows you, so I felt as if the pressure was off and it was one of my best performances as a pro. It was good to experience an event with such exposure.

“I think I’ll have to travel this year for title fights, so it also gave me the experience to know what I’ll have to do.

“We have had a wee bit of exposure up here fighting at the Hydro, but it was good to see what goes on with all the stuff behind the scenes at a big fight.

“There were about 200 guys running about daft setting it all up, and it was good to see that side of it.

“Our side of it is in the ring, but if you aren’t inspired by those experiences and think that it is going to be you headlining these shows one day, then you are in the wrong game.

“I feel that this year is the one that it is going to happen for me.”

Ham certainly started such an important year of his life in the right fashion, dragging himself out of bed on New Year’s Day to tackle one of Glasgow’s most daunting obstacles.

“Every New Year’s Day me and my pals start the year with a run up the Rottenrow hill,” he said.

“It was horrible, and it never gets any easier. I don’t drink, so I was driving for the bells, but I know a lot of the boys were dreading going out because it’s not the sort of thing you want to be doing on the 1st if you’ve had a few. Luckily, it wasn’t just as bad for me!”