Kell Brook
Brook is back in Sheffield to defend his IBF title on Saturday. Getty

Kell Brook makes his first IBF welterweight title defence on Saturday 28 March in what is also his first fight since being stabbed in August 2014.

Eight months on from the attack in Tenerife that left him with career-threatening injuries, the 28-year-old is back in his hometown of Sheffield for the showdown that should get him back on course for fights with the division's elite. But what is the story behind the man looking to ruin the party?

Ionuț 'Jo Jo' Dan is the man tasked with that. The Romanian-born southpaw fighting out of Montreal, Canada has just two losses to his name in a professional career spanning 36 fights over 11 years. But there is little doubt that Saturday's fight with Brook represents the biggest opportunity of his career.

Brook has this week told the press that Dan deservedly won his title of number one contender for the IBF world title. The 33-year-old's two victories over Kevin Bizier – both on a split decision - and Lukasz Janik in his last three fights catapulted him towards a title bout. But his lack of presence among the rankings within the other sanctioning bodies outside the IBF somewhat undermines his rise in the division.

Across the WBC (World Boxing Council), WBA (World Boxing Association) and WBO (World Boxing Organisation) top 15 rankings, Dan's name is notable only by its absence.

His two career losses have both come against Selcuk Aydin in 2010 and 2011, and while the Turkish fighter held home advantage in both bouts, Dan was easily bettered in their second encounter, losing on a unanimous decision in Istanbul.

To his credit, Dan has won his last five fights since that defeat in Turkey against Aydin, including those aforementioned wins over Bizierand and Janik, in addition to victories over Franklin Gonzalez and Damian Frias in New York.

But those names have hardly made waves in the very competitive welterweight division. Only one, the man Dan beat to earn Saturday's match in 30-year-old Canadian Bizier, features across the top 15 rankings in each weight, creeping in at 10<sup>th in the IBF rankings.

Having said that, Dann has taken his chances to rise up the rankings and comfortably bested the names filling out the division. The momentum gained through five consecutive victories cannot be discounted. It's up to him to provide a real test for Brook, who inevitably has his eye on a unification showdown with Floyd Mayweather Jr or Manny Pacquiao later this year.

"I want us to put together a super fight for all boxing fans," Dan said. "We both train and aim for the win, so the fans should expect fireworks.

"I have waited a long time to get a world title shot so I am determined to take advantage of this opportunity. My prediction for the fight is simple - Jo Jo Dan becomes the new IBF welterweight world champion."