CHORLEY boxer Michael Jennings could be set for a St Valentine’s Day showdown with Miguel Angel Cotto as the prospects of a challenge for a major world title move ever closer.

The WBU welterweight champion, the WBO’s mandatory challenger, could face former two-weight world champion Cotto for the title in February next year after the prospects of facing current champion Paul Williams seemed to go by the wayside.

Jennings was hoping to face Williams at the end of November. But news from the United States suggests that “The Punisher” is about to vacate the title he recently regained from Carlos Quintana because he can no longer make the weight.

So Jennings is expected to take a warm-up fight on November 14 and then is hoping to face the Puerto Rican former champion early next year in America.

The news comes as a huge boost to the Chorley champion who has waited patiently for his crack at a major title.

He said: “A fight against Cotto would be a good one for me. At 6ft 1in, Williams was massive for a welterweight and would be a very awkward opponent.

“I’ve seen the letter saying that he’s struggling to make the weight and it’s looking like I’ll take on Cotto for the vacant title.

“And that would be even better because then it would become a purse bid and the money would be split 50/50.

“He stands at 5’7’’ and lost his last fight (to Antonio Margarito) so he can be beaten and I believe I can beat him.

“He seems to start quickly and then slow down, where as I seem to get better as the fight goes on because of my fitness.

“I just hope the fight happens now but in boxing, nothing is certain until you see the signed contract.”

If Jennings were to be matched with Cotto, the former WBO junior middleweight and WBA welterweight champion, it would be a huge test against one of the premium fighters at the 10st 5lb limit.

Among his victims is Ricky Hatton’s next opponent Paulie Malignaggi.