20 April 2011 – Jonny Stapleton
Matthew Macklin will become Irelands fourth world title contester in less than six months when he challenges WBA middleweight champion Felix Strum in The Lanxess Arena Cologne Germany on July 2.
Macklin will be hoping to succeed were Willie Casey, Paul McCloskey and Brian Magee failed by successfully upgrading from European to world level latter in the summer. Mack the Knife has been cutting it at continental level for some years now, but despite being world ranked has struggled to secure a major break through fight.
Now after seeing a number of big fights fall through, including a fight with ring legend Winky Wright earlier this year, the talented 28 year old has finally got his chance on the biggest stage.
The Birmingham born fighter of Irish descent faces a tough trip to Germany but will fancy his chances against three time world champion Strum (35-02-01). And the German believes he will have to be at his best to defeat Macklin and make a successful eleventh defence of the title he won in 2007.
This will be one of my toughest fights because I know I can win against Macklin only when I am top form, Strum said yesterday.