By Barry Holbrook: IBF Featherweight Champion Kiko Martinez and Josh Warrington will meet tonight in their rematch on DAZN in Leeds, England. The fight card begins at 3:00 p.m. ET and will be LIVE on DAZN.
Five years ago, Warrington (30-1-1, 7 KOs) beat Kiko (43-10-2, 30 KOs) by a questionable 12-round majority decision in May 2017 at Leeds.
This victory was seen by many boxing fans as a hometown section of the Leeds native Warrington. Boxing News 24 will provide live updates and results from tonight’s action on the Martinez vs. Warrington 2 fight below.
- Featherweight Female Perspective Skye Nicholson (2-0) put on a master class performance beating Bec Connolly (3-12) by a six-round decision. The score was 60-54. Australian Skye, 26, showed excellent movement to land and avoid being countered by the slower Connolly.
Tonight Warrington will be back at his home in Leeds to challenge Martinez for his 126-kb IBF title, and we can only hope that if the contest goes 12 rounds we won’t see another controversial result.
Martinez is coming off his upset sixth-round victory over IBF featherweight champion Kid Galahad last November in Sheffield, England.
For his part, Warrington recently battled to a disappointing two-round technical draw against former conqueror Mauricio Lara last September in Leeds, a fight that ended after the Mexican warrior was badly cut from a clash of heads.
Some boxing fans believed that Warrington intentionally rammed Lara’s head out of the fight to avoid being knocked out by him again.
Martinez and Warrington risk it all
“Rematches are always exciting. Usually you get a rematch because the first fight was so good. This rematch is totally different,” said match boxing promoter Eddie Hearn.
Kiko Martinez vs. Josh Warrington 2 Undercard:
Maria Cecilia Roman vs. Ebanie Bridges
Maxi Hughes vs. Ryan Walsh
Dalton Smith vs. Ray Moylette
Skye Nicolson vs. Bec Connolly
Cory O’Regan vs. Jakub Laskowski
Mali Wright vs. Luis Palmer
Calum French vs. Angelo Turco
“This revenge comes five years after the first. This time for a world title [IBF featherweight belt]. This rematch comes unexpectedly, this rematch comes with everything at stake.
“Kiko Martinez against Kid Galahad was one of the standout turnarounds of a fight. Kiko Martinez did not win a round. We represent Kid Galahad and we were devastated for him. We want Josh Warrington to win on Saturday so badly.
“We also love Kiko Martinez. How can you not love Kiko Martinez? He’s actually a guy at the beginning of his career who probably lacked a bit of discipline, but discipline is instilled at the end of his career, as it has been given in this Indian summer,” Hearn said.
“When I go into a fight of this magnitude, the only thing I think about is my family, that they can have a great life and not miss anything. I want them to be proud of the work I do every day. “said Kiko Martinez.
“The feelings and emotions that go into fight night and what comes after are the fear, the adrenaline, the nerves, the anxiety that runs through your bloodstream,” Warrington said. “The next day is pandemonium and the triumph of victory catches the eye like never before.
“It’s a feeling that only lasts a few days before you go back to the gym, but it’s a special feeling. I’ve only experienced it twice. The first time was a knockout loss [to Mauricio Lara], and the second time was a draw. I try not to dwell on it too much,” Warrington said.
“Mauricio Lara fight was potentially career ending to come back and accept that Headingley rematch, showed so much heart [by Warrington].
“Obviously it wasn’t right for anyone at Headingley but to have that opportunity to become a double in his town, all the dreams we had when he came back to us at Matchroom, they’re all sitting there in his hands if he can. win on Saturday,” Hearn said of Warrington.
Does Warrington still have anything?
“There are definitely a few more chapters to write in Josh Warrington’s story. I’m hitting my peak years now. It shows in the gym and it shows in my training,” Warrington said.
“My spirit is stronger than it’s ever been. I’ve been through setbacks and learned from them. I learned as a fighter. There’s still life in the old dog,” Warrington said.
“There are still two fights left in Kiko Martinez’s history,” Kiko said. “I have to be a unified world champion [at 126]. I keep my belt and I’m ready to give everything in the ring.
“I will never give up and I will pay any price to remain world champion,” Martinez said.
“The first fight between these two went at an electric pace,” Hearn said of Kiko and Warrington. “This one is going to be even more rampant with two guys desperate to win, two guys who need to win,” Hearn said.
“It’s about being back on top, getting that pole position back, being world champion again for me,” Warrington said of the significance of his fight tonight against the featherweight champion. IBF Kiko.
“The followers who will support me and support me for my family and my own legacy are huge in what rolls,” Warrington said.
Kiko predicts KO
“My final prediction is a knockout win,” Martinez said of his prediction tonight in his long-awaited rematch with Josh.
“I visualized this constantly throughout my camp, at night, in the mountains, on the bag, in combat, every moment the vision was to knock Josh Warrington out,” Martinez said.
“My last message to Kiko is Kiko, thanks for the opportunity. There’s one you’ll miss. I’m the new[IBFfeatherweightchampion”saidWarrington[IBFfeatherweightchampion”saidWarrington[championpoidsplumeIBF»adéclaréWarrington[IBFfeatherweightchampion”saidWarrington
“My final message to Josh Warrington is don’t make excuses after the fight,” Martinez said. “Don’t say it was a fluke or it was the weight.
“He had several weeks to prepare, so let him be honest after winning the fight,” Kiko said.
“I think it’s over for both fighters if they lose on Saturday night,” Hearn said of Warrington and Martinez. “All of them have been tremendous world champions.
“Each of them only wanted to play sports with a belt around their waist. This is an absolute win for Josh Warrington and Kiko Martinez,” Eddie Hearn said.