By Ben Jacobs
Kiko Martínez believes his current form and newfound confidence will produce a different result in his rematch with Belfast’s Carl Frampton. Frampton stopped Martínez in nine rounds in their first encounter back in February 2013, but the Spaniard has since gone on to claim the IBF super bantamweight crown and successfully defend it three times, all by knockout.
“I’m going to be calmer going in to this fight,” he told BoxingScene.
“I’m more familiar with my trainers now, Gabriel and Pablo Sarmiento, and I will be the real me in this fight. That night wasn’t me, that’s why things caught up with me, I wasn’t myself in the interviews or at the weigh in before the fight. I’m going to enjoy it in there. I was annoyed at not having fought for a while and actually deep down I knew he was going to beat me because I wasn’t mentally ready for that fight.”
Martínez is aware that travelling to Northern Ireland and emerging victorious will be a difficult task, particular against a man who has already beaten him and is rapidly improving. However, the Alicante native is not so impressed with Frampton’s recent opposition.
“I think they’ve been looking after him very well, the only hard fight he has had in his career was against me and I had been out of the ring for nine months. He’s had good opponents but not top level. Frampton is a good boxer and too good of a warrior to have some of these lesser fights. It’s not good for him.
“He’s gone backwards, not forward, his boxing hasn’t changed, he can get better physically but he’s not fighting away from home against top level and he won’t advance this way.
“I need to win by knockout or at least give him a good beating to win. If not it will be difficult to win but I’m sure the judges will be fair and if I deserve to win then they’ll give me the victory.”
Ever since the possibility emerged of a rematch between the two men, fans of Frampton have taken to Twitter to give his Spanish rival some abuse which Martínez understands is part of the game.
I’ve had a lot of messages on Twitter from his fans,” Kiko said, laughing.
“Some have called me a chicken, called me all sorts of names but at the same time I don’t want to be rude about anybody. But they should give me credit for giving Frampton this chance which he didn’t deserve and they can see that for being a ‘chicken’ I’m going back to Ireland to fight him.”