Rough Go For Martinez Over Murray, Retains Middleweight Title in Argentina
By Robert Brizel, Head Real Combat Media Correspondent
Buenos Aires, Argentina (April 28th, 2013)–Sergio Gabriel Martinez, at 38 years old, is a fading southpaw middleweight champion. In his last bout, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. gave him all he could handle and decked him in the final round.
Martinez built a points lead over Martin Murray with his solid long jabs in the first six rounds, then began to get hit as Murray’s red gloves up defense held solidly and he counterpunched better, and the middleweight championship scoring narrowed.
In the end, Martinez retained his World Boxing Council World Middleweight championship by 12 round unanimous decision in the main event at Club Atletico Velez Sarsfield, Buenos Aires, Argentina, on April 27, 2013. Martinez is co-promoted by Lou DiBella’s DiBella Entertainment and Sampson Liewcowicz’ Sampson Boxing, broadcast live on television on Home Box Office.
Against Britain’s Martin Murray, Martinez got time to recover in the fourth round from a low blow. Martinez got decked by a Murray right-left combination in the ninth round for a potential 10-8 round, and went down again in the tenth round by what appeared to be a knockdown but what ruled a slip. The slip was reviewed by ringside officials on instant replay. Martinez took a beating at times in his homecoming to Argentina, a rough go. Martinez hand picked Murray as his opponent, and was in serious trouble with Murray in deep waters.
The Murray knockdown of Martinez was produced by a straight right hand jab followed by a left hook. The second drop of Martinez happened due to a glancing blow to the head with Martinez backing up and falling backwards without the feet of the two fighters being tangled up, but there wasn’t enough to call it a knockdown.
Martinez always take chances by fighting with his hands down, which probably will not work against the other paper middleweight champions Peter Quillin and Gennady Golovkin. surely Murray is a far better middleweight fighter than most people gave him credit for, and if he keeps winning deserves a shot at one of the other divisional titles.
Murray’s entire game consisted of a solid gloves up defense, followed by counter power shots which landed effectively on Martinez and caused a lot of problems.
Martinez was slipping and moving well in the eleventh round, with Murray missing
many punches. Murray allowed his bout in Germany with Felix Sturm to slip away from him in the late rounds. Martinez landed 16 of 62 in the critical eleventh round, Murray 14 of 52. Martinez contended with a cut on the left eyebrow, while Murray dealt with a bloody nose.
Martinez had a broken hand from the four round on with Chavez, and injured his left knee in the eleventh round against Chavez and later required surgery, and apparently reinjured the left hand again against Murray. With the bout on the table entering the twelfth and final round, and Murray unhurt, Martinez did just enough to land a bit more than the slightly more cautious Murray in the twelfth round to win. Murray complained frequently about cuts and butts to the referee, which may have worked to his detriment as the referee did not cross over to his side as desired.
Martinez most valuable asset is his side to side foot movement and fast hand speed, his greatest weakness his hands down weakness which has caused him to get caught in his last two bouts. A hard hitter like a Floyd Mayweather would exploit the hands down style of Martinez with power shots, so Martinez’ hands down fighting style remains questionable as his career pushes into the Bernard Hopkins twilight zone of age.
HBO Commentator had the bout for Martinez by one point after giving him Martinez the last two rounds. The three judges had the bout 115-112 for Martinez.
Real Combat Media scored the bout 114-113 for Martinez on the basis of winning the last two rounds. But it was a fantastic performance by Murray against Martinez. The bout looked similar to Carlos Monzon’s last title bout win over ROdrigo Valdez in 1977 in which Monzon came off the canvas to win the 15 rounder. If it would have been Carlos Monzon against Martin Murray, Monzon, like Martinez, would have come on stronger in the later rounds. Like Valdez, Murray was never hurt. Great Britain’s former world champion Barry McGuigan felt Murray won the bout 114-113. Some boxing experts thought the last two rounds could have gone either way. However, Murray came up short at the end as he appeared
to tire in the last 30 seconds with Martinez winning the round, and thus the bout could not have ended in a draw as Martinez was clearly ahead, however slight, and did enough to win the final round. Martinez is now 51-2-2, 28 knockouts.
Murray falls to 25-1-1, 11 knockouts.
Retains World Boxing Council World Middleweight Title
scoring: 115-112, 115-112, 115-112 for Martinez.
Dahiana Santana Win 10 Claudia Andrea Lopez
(Retains International Boxing Federation Female Featherweight Title)
Luis Carlos Abregu Win 10 Antonin DeCarie
(Wins Vacant World Boxing Council Silver Welterweight Title)
Magomed Abdusalamov TKO 1 Sebastian Ignacio Ceballos
(Retains World Boxing Council WBC USNBC Heavyweight Title)
Diego Pichardo Lirano Win 6 Ivan Ruiz
(Wins Vacant International Boxing Federation Latino Bantamweight Title)
Kiko Martinez TKO 2 Damian Marchano, Super Bantamweights
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