By Jonny Stapleton
LOU DiBella has created a world title Mexican stand off between Irish contenders Matthew Macklin and Andy Lee and current WBC Diamond strap holder Sergio Martinez.
Martinez defends his title against Darren Barker this Saturday night with both Lee and Macklin confident that if the Argentine makes a successful defence they will get a chance to dethrone the middleweight ring king in New York on St Patrick’s Day.
Big time American promoter DiBella, who looks after the affairs of Martinez, Lee and Macklin, hinted earlier this week that Lee Martinez was a big possibility if the Limerick southpaw gets Brian Vera revenge in the chief support bout to the 36 year olds world title defence this Saturday night.
However, Macklin, who like Patrick Hyland has moved to America this month and will be ringside for Sky in Atlantic City, also thinks he is Martinez pole and believes if he registers a successful DiBella debut in December he will be set for a March 17 world title fight.
The fighter who was robbed in his first world title tilt with Felix Strum in Germany said,
“I am fighting before Christmas in New York, a few names have been thrown at us but nothing concrete. All going well, if Martinez beats Barker, which most people think he should there is a very good chance I will fight Martinez in New York on Paddy’s Day. It is a tough fight for Darren, but the only real full blown middleweight Martinez has beat was Pavilik. Now Martinez looked amazing since especially against Williams and is the favourite but Barker might have a chance. If Barker wins that is a fight that can also be made there is history there between me and him.”
Barker, who also has Andy Lee previous, is confident he can beat the man deemed the best middleweight in the world.
And if he does claim the world crown he wants his first defence to be against Macklin.
“I want to take Macklin out. I want that name on my record I want to prove I am the better fighter. He has to get it into his head the only way he will be fighting Martinez is as a warm up for me.”