A tumultuous right hook from Argentinian fighter, Jorge Sebastien Heiland was thought to be the end of the line for English fighter Matthew Macklin. The loss was his second loss in his past four fights and his third knockout loss in his past six fights. In June 2013, Macklin earned a shot at the WBA world middleweight title against Kazakhstan’s own knockout artist Gennady Golovkin.
Macklin was overwhelmed from the opening bell. After taking a devastating blow to the liver, he immediately hit the canvas and saw his shot to be a world champion, dissipate yet again. However, Macklin, 32, didn’t give up. He fought Lamar Russ and Jose Yebes in eight-round and ten-round bouts respectively.
The fight with Heiland was a relatively close encounter, before taking the brutal punch that knocked him out for the fourth time in his career. But, Macklin has decided to fight on. He is scheduled to make his comeback on 9 Mat from the Barclaycard Arena in Birmingham, West Midlands, United Kingdom against an opponent to be determined.
“I’m doing a 10-rounder, just waiting on news for an opponent, and we’ll see what comes after that towards the end of the year. I was obviously going to retire after the fight with Jorge Sebastian Heiland because I felt tired, old real early in the fight, and the more I analyzed it once I had rest over the year, I just thought it was very, very possible that I was just burned out and jaded. I had been training from like the third or fourth week of January for the Sturm (Felix Sturm) rematch, which never materialized, then after a few days out, I was back in the gym training for the Geale (Daniel Geale) fight, which fell through two weeks before. After a week or ten days after that, I’m back in training for another fight. All year I was training for a fight. I’m 32. 22, that’s a lot of training, but 32, it’s too much training. I just think I was burnt out and over-trained.”
Macklin knows that 9 May is a must-win fight. If he wins and feels good at the end of the bout, Macklin wants to be in a world title match. If not, he would like a shot at Martin Murray, who was recently stopped on 21 February against Gennady Golovkin in Monte Carlo. A competitive fighter never wants to lose, let alone retire with a loss. “The Knife” is no different, adding that retirement would have been an unhealthy for his decision for his sake.
“When I do retire, I’m going to retire on my time. I want peace of mind. I want closure. So, I’m not going to hang around if it’s not there anymore, but for the sake of happiness in retirement, I do want another fight to see how I feel. If I feel good, then I’ll be looking for a world title shot after that. If not, Martin Murray or whatever big fight comes after. It’s not like I need a test or anything. The test I need is for myself really, what’s left. I think how I train comes important. I don’t think I need to train as hard, as often. What you lose is used to gain experience, so it’s important to use that experience.”
Then, Macklin went on to praise Gennady Golovkin and Martin Murray for their performances.
“Man, maybe he (Golovkin) is the best. Who knows? He hasn’t even been tested yet has he really. Murray went 11 rounds with him, so he’s tested him in that regard, but it was all Golovkin. We still don’t even know how good he is. He’s arguably the best pound-for-pound fighter. Mayweather is Mayweather, and he’s proven it time and time again, but I think Golovkin is the heir to the throne, the pound-for-pound throne . Martin Murray, hats off to him. He’s a tough man and he showed balls. He got hurt by him in the fourth. The bell helped him that time, but he came through it and toughed it out. There were some real sticky moments in the fight, and he showed a lot of grit.”
Macklin had to defend his plans to fight Murray as both fighters are trying to comeback from one-sided defeats. How realistic would a fight between these two be for the boxing world? Macklin attempts to explain his position.
“I’ve struggled to get up for fights that have meant nothing, as has he, and he’s looked poor, and then he stepped up a bit and he’s looked good, as have I. I don’t think he wants to step down a level now. He’s the same age as me. He doesn’t want to waste time-fighting nobodies. Everybody wants big fights, big money, big exposure, big profile, fights that you can get up for,” said Macklin. “He’d take that bucks for me and I’m sure I’d take that bucks from him. The Golovkin fight knocked a lot out of him because he took a lot of stick in there. But, he’ll have a good rest, and I’m sure he’ll look to come back in a big fight.”
Macklin also added that he received an offer to fight Daniel Jacobs for his WBA World middleweight title last year, but the fight was not feasible at the time.