Paul McCloskey has taken a massive step towards securing a rematch with Amir Khan after emerging victorious from a brutal battle with Columbian Bredis Prescott in Belfast.

McCloskey recovered from a poor start, in which he was controversially adjudged to have been knocked down in the first, to battle back and win on a unanimous points decision 114-113, 115-113, 114-113.

Prescott looked to be on the way to victory until he faded from the eight round onwards and it allowed the Irishman to launch a comeback that would see him emerge victorious.

McCloskey is now in pole position for another shot at WBA and IBF light-welterweight champion Khan next year.