JOSH Taylor has travelled quite a distance since he first made his mark on the international scene, back in 2010.
Eight years ago, Taylor won silver at the Delhi Commonwealth Games, but since that first major achievement he has transformed himself into Britain’s most exciting of boxing talents, with the potential to ultimately put himself up there with Scotland’s very best in the history of the sport.
Such is Taylor’s standing, he will tonight headline the biggest boxing show that Scotland has seen in years when he takes on Winston Campos, with the Scot defending his WBC silver super-lightweight belt.
Those inside Glasgow’s Hydro Arena will be there to witness him take what could be the latest step in his journey towards the ultimate prize in boxing – a world title.
I first met Taylor when I was 
a team-mate of his at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and 
I remember back then those in the know saying that he was one to watch out for in the future.
Taylor’s reaction to that silver 
medal that he won in Delhi said 
much about him too – rather than turn professional, as he undoubtedly could have, he vowed to remain amateur and upgrade his silver to gold four year later.
I was again a team-mate of Taylor’s at London 2012 and I remember speaking to him in the Athletes Village a day after his defeat to Domenico Valentino, the No.2 seed in the last sixteen, and he was visibly disappointed at his failure to get on to the Olympic podium.
Much has been said about Taylor’s impressive gold at Glasgow 2014 but 
it is his progress as an professional after joining the pro ranks post-Commonwealth Games that has been nothing less than mind-blowing.
Ask anyone, the Prestonpans fighter has always had the talent. But what has been so impressive about Taylor over the past few years has been his willingness to get his head down and concentrate on edging closer and closer to his ambition of becoming world champion.
The stark change, for me anyway, 
is how Taylor has developed over the past three or four years into a measured, mature yet supremely confident athlete.
At a Commonwealth Games, the boxers are always the characters of Team Scotland. Taylor, then aged only 19, had an air of a bit of a daft laddie about him – although in fairness, who wasn’t a bit daft at 19? – but he has grown into himself and seems supremely comfortable occupying the high-profile position that he now holds.
Yet he appears entirely unfazed by the talk around him and the fact that everyone who is anyone in the boxing world has earmarked him to become a future world champion seems to have failed to affect him in any way, shape or form.
His relocation to train with trainer Shane McGuigan in London appears to have been a master-stroke, with McGuigan commenting that the hardest thing being preventing Taylor from training too hard such is his work-ethic. Scotland needed a world-class boxer to take over Ricky Burns’ mantle and Taylor has stepped into the breach seamlessly. 
While Taylor is not the finished article just yet, there are few signs that his progress will not continue. That silver medal in Delhi seems an age ago. Taylor was a different boxer and a different man back then. But the most encouraging thing is that he has quite a way to go yet.