By Miguel Rivera
The World Boxing Council's mandatory challenger to the middleweight crown, Marco Antonio Rubio (57-6-1, 49KOs), is confident he can knock champion Sergio Martinez out.
Rubio, by way of a court order, was made the mandatory challenger to Martinez's title. On Saturday he watched Martinez struggle in his decision victory over British contender Martin Murray. Rubio does not expect Martinez to last distance with him.
Even though Martinez suffered several injuries in Saturday's win, and likely won't fight until 2014, Rubio plans to start some early training for the Martinez battle.
It is very likely that Rubio's team will petition to have Martinez become the "champion in recess" if the boxer is unable to defend the title until 2014. If the WBC approves such a request, as they did in the case of Andre Ward being stripped a few weeks ago due to injury, Rubio would fight the next highest ranked contender for the vacant title, and Martinez would receive an immediate shot at the winner.
"I'm not saying Martinez will have another bad night when we get in the ring, but I am saying that I'm at my best and I feel ready and I'm going to snatch that title and bring it back to Mexico for all of my people who supported me," Rubio said.
"I'm going to California again to begin preparing for the fight with Martinez. I only hope that our promoters agree on a date. I'm taking my partner and friend Jose "Piston" Lopez, who helps me a lot with sparring, and soon we will know the date of when I'm bringing the championship back to Mexico."