Lutalo Muhammad would have had no problems with facing world number one Aaron Cook if asked to fight for a place on Great Britain's Olympic taekwondo team but wants to put the selection controversy behind him.
Muhammad has been selected by GB Taekwondo - a decision backed by the British Olympic Association - ahead of Cook to fight in the under-80kg category at London 2012.
Muhammad, who has stepped down from the under-87kg class, and Cook have fought twice this year, with the head-to-head record at one win apiece, but with Cook ranked world number one at the weight the decision to select Muhammad, ranked 59th in the world. has drawn criticism.
It has been suggested the two could face off - a prospect not being entertained by GB Taekwondo - but while Muhammad would have no problem with that he would rather move on from the controversy.
Muhammad's nomination was ratified by the BOA at the third time of asking last Friday.
Cook is expected to announce in the coming days whether he will launch a legal challenge to his omission from the team.
Cook was overlooked three times by GB Taekwondo, with the BOA and the World Taekwondo Federation launching reviews into the selection process, but, barring any intervention from the WTF, it appears taking his case to the courts is the 21-year-old's last hope of participating at London 2012.
Muhammad, who insists the controversy has been hard on him too, would have no problems facing Cook.
Asked if he would take part in a face-off, he told Press Association Sport: "I heard some rumours (of a face-off) and you know, my attitude is 'whatever happens, happens'.
"I respect whatever decision is made. If it ever came to anything, I would have been up for it. But I respect their decision and am very happy to be going to the Games.
"Would I back myself to beat him? Of course!"
He added: "I've kind of been in a protective bubble up here (in Manchester) with Team GB where people have been very supportive."
Muhammad revealed the row over selection had been difficult for both him and Cook to take.
He said: "It's been tough on both of us.
"It was always going to be a tough decision that would have created a tough ordeal for both of us. But I think the situation has really been blown way out of proportion more than any of us expected.
"It's been tough on both of us and I don't really think that's been fair. At the end of the day we're both European champions.
"We both just want to compete to the best of our ability so I think the fact that there's been all this going on is probably not fair on me or him."
Muhammad insists there is no personal animosity, though the pair have not spoken about the selection issue.
He said: "I have no problems with Aaron. Even after this ordeal, I still don't have any problems with him. But the nature of sport is that there will always be winners and losers.
"I wish him the best with his future and all through this ordeal but my focus right now can't be Aaron Cook. It has to be being on the top of that podium in a few months' time."
For now, however, the 21-year-old is happy to concentrate on the Games in his native London.
"I have to put all of this out of my mind and focus on my training," he said.
"I'm just really excited about showing what I can do. It's gold or nothing for me in terms of targets."
Cook's management company later announced that he would hold a press conference in London at 11am on Wednesday.