Last night in his opponent’s homeland of Spain, former middleweight king Sergio Martinez won via stoppage. His unlikely comeback now underway, Martinez surprised many with how good he looked last night. Coming in at just over the 160 pound mark, the 45 year old looked trim and fast and above all, he showed absolutely no signs at all of any knee trouble.
Martinez decked Fandino in the sixth round and then closed the show with a nice body shot in the seventh round. Martinez, having his first fight since losing to Miguel Cotto back in 2014, is now 52-2-2 with 29 KOs. Fandino falls to 15-7 with 8 KOs.
Martinez fought his usual way, his hands down, his style reliant on reflexes and speed, and though he was in with a decent enough but not world class foe, it has to be said that Martinez really did look good. Far better perhaps than anybody thought would be the case before the fight. Many people had urged Martinez not to return to the ring after such a long time out of action. But Martinez, who underwent surgery on his troublesome knees, was determined to do it again.
How far “Maravilla” can go in his comeback is unclear, yet the former champ is aiming for a shot at current WBA middleweight champ Ryota Murata. However, another fight that has been spoken of as a real possibility is one between Martinez and Oscar de La Hoya.
As fans know, 47 year old De La Hoya is to return to the ring himself next year and he says it will be at either 154 or 160. Fans agree a clash between the two veteran former champions would make sense and be a big attraction.
Let’s see if this one actually gets made. For now, Martinez has at least managed to silence a few critics. The southpaw looked sharp last night. Quite amazing really. And again, this is taking on board the fact that the Argentine star was in with a journeyman.
What a story it would be if Martinez actually managed to win another world title at this stage of his life and career.