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Thursday 14 December 2017

Macklin still in the big league

September 15 is the date set for the Las Vegas WBC middleweight showdown between Argentinian Sergio Martinez and Mexican Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.

Both boxers go into the fight having dispatched Irish contenders.

Martinez (49-2-2, 28KO), 37, wore down Matthew Macklin in the 11th round of their 12-rounder in New York in March.

Two weeks ago, Chavez Jr (46-0-1, 32KO), 26, took care of Andy Lee in the seventh round in El Paso.

Macklin is on the undercard (probably fighting Joachim Alcine), and has some major motivation for the fight.

"Macklin is one of the most exciting middleweights in the world," says promoter Lou DiBella. "He gave Martinez one of the best fights of his career. Macklin has never been in a bad fight."

At 30, Macklin (28-4, 19KO) is a bankable athlete and, if he wins his next bout, looks set to be offered a title shot at Chavez Jr by DiBella.

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The High Performance gym at the National Stadium has an array of high-tech equipment designed to help our elite boxers improve their performance.

Now micro-chip technology has been developed to such an extent that boxing gloves can be monitored for accuracy and power of punches. There are those who hope these developments will eventually be used to score bouts and take decision-making away from judges, whose often controversial interpretations cast a cloud over the sport

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Super-bantamweight Carl Frampton's seventh-round knockout of Kris Hughes in January has persuaded the 24-year-old Scottish boxer to move up in weight for his next bout. Hughes will meet unbeaten Ghana lightweight Richard Commey, who has 11 knockout wins to his credit, next Saturday, on the undercard of the Ian Lewison-Istvan Ruszinsky heavyweight bout at York Hall in London.

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