Martin Murray More then Willing To Tango with Matthew Macklin

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After his 11th round TKO loss to middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin(WBA Super, interim WBC and IBO) this Martin Murray past February. Martin Murray(29-2-1, 12KO’s) has been entertaining the idea of fighting a longstanding domestic rival in Matthew Macklin(31-6, 20KO’s). He spoke to Kugan Cassius from iFL TV.

“If that fight’s there at middleweight with Macklin, it’s a good fight, why not? I’ve always wanted the fight; I’d fight anybody. As he’s proved to be fair to him, he’ll fight anybody, but the fights have gotta be for the right time.”

Both men are at this time regrouping from knockout losses. Murray was gradually and deliberately broken down by Golovkin before that stoppage came. While Macklin was left with his head draped over the bottom rope from a puncturing Jorge Heiland right hook in the tenth round of their November meeting last year.

The latter appeared more damaging, for Macklin seemed truly estranged from his senses from a few moments as he sat propped in the corner, the referee waving over him. Murray feels Macklin’s next opponent will not pose the same sort of danger.

“After his last fight, it was a tough’n, he needs a good’n to warm back into it, a nice easy one to see where he is. I think that’s what he’s planning on doing, and if he wants the fight then I’m game, I’ve always wanted the fight. I’ve accepted it a couple of times before.”

Going into the fight with Heiland, Macklin exuded the confidence of a well-travelled and experienced fighter. He had competed at the highest level against Felix Sturm in 2011 and Sergio Martinez in 2012, only narrowly missing out on lifting a belt both times. After two lacklustre showings against Lamar Russ and Jose Yebes he claimed he was back on top form in the pre-fight press conference for Heiland(also filmed by iFL TV).

“I don’t think I’ve felt this good going into a fight since I fought Felix Sturm. Mentally it’s the best I’ve felt since that fight. Felt really good in sparring, strong.”

10507097_10152589101969271_1137499475294693145_oBut after the second round Macklin looked like he was moving through quicksand. He was not producing anything like the intensity that marked his efforts earlier in life. He slowed with every minute that passed before eventually getting pinned down in the tenth with nowhere to go. Then the right hook landed. All this is to say Macklin professed to be firing on all cylinders going into that fight both mentally and physically, but that was not anywhere near the best version of his we’ve seen. Not even close.

Murray incidentally also fought Sturm and Martinez unsuccessfully after Macklin tried his hand with similar results. He drew with Sturm in Germany when he could easily have won and went to Argentina to fight their native son Martinez in a highly contentious points loss in which he floored the champion twice. He too suffered a lull after dropping back down in competition before the Golovkin fight, but emerged with much credit from that for almost going the distance with such a terrifying puncher.

This fight between Murray and Macklin would have been a more intriguing occasion for the British public -I make the distinction because it’s only a big fight in the UK- had it been made a year or two ago, before they had this many miles on the clock. Now it seems that Macklin may have slipped a little bit; a lackadaisical effort from a man known for his vigour is not a good sign. And Murray is contemplating a move up to super-middleweight. However, as Murray said, he would be willing to take the fight at middleweight for he would consider a big fight like this an appropriate motivator for himself. The big occasion can drag remarkable things out of people.