1st December 2011
St Helen’s Unbeaten Martin Murray challenges Felix Sturm for the WBA Middleweight title in SAP Arena, Mannheim on Friday night and it is a fight that his promoter Ricky Hatton is confident he can win, becoming the fighter turned promoter, first world champion.
Murray the currently the British & Commonwealth Champion British, Commonwealth and WBA intercontinental champion (23-0) goes into the lion’s den to face Sturm (36-2-1) for the coveted WBA belt and hopes to go one better than fellow Brit Matthew Macklin, who took the German the distance in June, only to lose out narrowly on points.
Murray, 29, will start a huge underdog to beat the German superstar, but Hatton Promotions head, Ricky who will be ringside in Germany is confident his man has what it takes to cause an upset.
“I feel Martin Murray can become my first world champion.” said Hatton.
Weigh-in video and Interview with Murray, Sturm and Ricky Hatton ahead of the Big fight in Germany
“Apart from his obvious talent he’s in his prime, hungry, fresh with very few miles on the clock. This is the right fight at the right time.”
Murray will be bidding to become Hatton Promotions first ever world champion in Mannheim tomorrow night, which would be a massive achievement for him and the rookie promotional outfit, that has really come to fruition very quickly in the game and producing a world champion in such quick time, will really cement the great work they have already done so far in British boxing.
Sturm will be making his 11th defence against Murray but there were signs that he could be in decline when snatching a controversial points win against Matthew Macklin in June and Murray knows he will have to go all out to get a result in Germany should the fight go to points.
“I watched Sturm’s defence against Macklin and made it a draw.” said Murray.
Big Fight Preview Sturm vs Murray
“When it is that close the champion on home soil usually gets the decision and there could be no real complaints.”
Murray – who has only been 12 rounds once in his career – admits the opportunity has come a little earlier than he expected, although he’s still confident he can triumph on his travels and bring the belt back home with him.
“My chance came and I’ve taken it,” he told Sky Sports’ Ringside show.
“It wouldn’t be ideal really, thinking of it, because I’ve only been 12 rounds once and he’s been it God knows how many times.
“He’s a very experienced fighter, but I’m younger, I’m fresher and I’m a lot hungrier than him. “
Murray has been working hard with trainer Oliver Harrison to get himself in the best possible shape for his big night – and paid tribute to the man he calls a dear friend as well as his coach.
“It’s great working with Oliver,” he said. “He’s a great guy and world-class coach.
“It’s just brilliant having the confidence in the corner of Oliver and I know that if I turn up on the night feeling right and stick to Oliver’s game-plan, everything’s going to be alright.
“I’ve never known anyone to read a fighter and read fights the way he does.
“He’s so knowledgeable and it’s unbelievable just watching him when he goes to work. He’s just a great coach and, like I said, I feel lucky to have him in my corner.”
“Sturm is a great and deserving champion but on Friday night, his time will come to an end. I will dominate him. I will beat him. And I will grab his title.
He said: “Sturm is a great and deserving champion but on Friday night, his time will come to an end. I will dominate him. I will beat him. And I will grab his title.” added a confident Murray.
Good Luck Martin from BritishBoxers!