Sturm backs Martinez-but offers to fight Macklin in NY

By Jonny Stapleton

Felix Sturm believes Matthew Macklin will taste a second successive world title fight defeat in Madison Square Garden this Saturday night, but claims he is willing to offer the Irish middleweight a world title life line.

Sturm, who retained his WBA belt after being awarded a shocking decision when the pair meet in Germany late last year, predicts the Argentine will have to much quality and experience for his Irish counterpart.

Indeed the long reigning world champ says that the ‘Mack The Knife’s’ come forward approach plays perfectly into the third best fighter on the planet hands.

“Martinez is a good fighter. He is very experienced and a very confident operator. I think he is a smarter boxer than Macklin. Macklin likes to fight on the inside, but that come forward style suits Martinez and I think he will cause Macklin problems. You can not rule out a surprise, but if Matthew was to win it would in my opinion be a surprise,” Sturm told Mirror Sport yesterday.

If as ‘King Leonidas’ expects, Macklin doesn’t end Sergio Martinez reign as king of the middleweight’s he will offer the former Tipperary underage hurler a repeat of their November clash.

And in a bid to prove he can win without help from German judging officials Sturm is willing to stage the fight in New York.

“I would like to fight Matthew again and I am sure the world wants to see that fight. I offered Matthew the rematch before he took the Martinez fight, but he had a lot of excuses about the contract. So I offered it to him again with no options. If he won he was free to do what he liked and he turned it down. I still want the fight and I am willing to fight him in America. I would travel to New York and we could make it a big fight for Europe and the World. The Irish fan base in New York is massive and I have fans over there too so it would be a great occasion.”

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