23 March 2011 – Jonny Stapleton
Kiko Martinez has closed the door on a potential super bantamweight European title fight with Willie Casey.
Martinez, who hopes to be crowned continental ring king for the third time after a clash with Jason Booth in May, was touted as a possible route back to the big time for Casey after the Limerick mans unsuccessful WBA Interim attempt. However the Spaniard is adamant Big Bang will not explode straight back into European title contention if he reclaims the belt he vacated to let Casey and Paulie Hyland contest the first ever all Irish EBU fight back in November.
Indeed if ‘Mini Tyson’ is successful in winning the strap Casey gave up to fight the sensational Guillermo Rigondeaux, he claims the Dolphil promoted star is the last person he would defend against. Martinez, who had Bernard Dunne gone in 86 seconds, claims the pint sized sluggers team reneged on an agreement to defend against the Spaniard and as a result, team Martinez are happy to let Casey take the long road back to the top.
Despite trading verbal blows with the fellow former European champ out side the ring, further creating an appetite for what would be deemed an Irish revenge mission in the process, La Sencasion is adamant he will never trade punches in side squared circle with Casey. Replying to inquires made by www.irish-boxing.com, Team Martinez made the following statement.
Kiko is always confident he will beat Jason Booth and become European champion for the third time. When he regains his title the last person he would consider as an opponent is Willie Casey. Willie got blown out of the ring in search of a mickey mouse title. We have actually given Willie enough chances. He would not have been European champion if Kiko had not got injured and vacated. Wille shook hands in the ring in Limerick and agreed to defend the belt against Kiko, but he backed out of the agreement. Let him do it the hard way now and lets see how far he can get. Kiko does understand why Willie took the world title fight. You have to do what you can for your family and hopefully Willie got a good pay day.
However, putting Willie in against Rigondeaux was like sending a lamb to the slaughter. How can you put someone who has won 10 fights in with someone who has had 400 fights, been an Olympic champion and world amateur champion? It was very bad mistake. Kiko is going to write himself into the history books by being a three time European champion. He will then go on to become world champion. We are going forward not backwards and are going for a real world title not an interim.