Boxing


Nicky Cook Promised Big Things If He Can Beat Roman Martinez On Saturday's Big Show In Manchester

by James Slater - Amir Khan and Enzo Maccarinelli aren't the only world class British fighters in action this coming Saturday night. Once-beaten super-featherweight contender and ruling WBO 130-pound champion Nicky Cook also takes to the stage at the M.E.N Arena in Manchester, when he takes on unbeaten Puerto Rican talent Roman Martinez..

In what may well turn out to be the fight of the night, the 29-year-old from Essex will likely have a tough time against the 21-0-1 (12) challenger - who, according to some bookmakers, is a slight betting favourite. Cook, 29-1(16) is extremely confident he will win, however, and he has been promised some big opportunities by his promoter Frank Warren if he does emerge victorious on Saturday.

Cook, who has beaten good men like "Amazing" Alex Arthur in his time, and has only lost to the world class Steve Luevano (KO by 11), wants to take on all the top men in his weight class after he has beaten Martinez - as Warren explained to The East London Advertiser.

"Nicky has made it very clear that he wants to unify the various super-featherweight titles and that's what we are looking to do later in 2009 if he wins in Manchester," Warren said.
It won't be easy to subdue Martinez, though - the number-two ranked contender in the WBC rankings, and the number-one guy at 130 according to the WBO. Accordingly, Cook has done his homework.

"I've watched a few DVD's of Martinez in action and he's an exciting fighter who likes to throw a lot of punches, but he does get hit a lot," Cook said. "Martinez had to go all ten rounds for a points win over Walter Estrada, who my stable-mate Kevin Mitchell had already stopped in five rounds.

"It's a big plus that the fight is over here and I'm confident that I'm going to have my hand raised."

Will he though? "Cookie" will have home advantage, sure enough - but Martinez is the younger man at age 26, he is slightly taller, he has never tasted defeat, and he is damn hungry. Somewhat an unknown quantity, the fighter known as "Rocky" has beaten decent men like the aforementioned Estrada, along with a 14-1-1 Santos Benavides, and a 17-1-1 Daniel Jimenez. A pro since 2001, Martinez has travelled before. Fighting in Miami, California and Las Vegas, the Puerto Rican proved he is unafraid to leave his homeland for a bout.

A very tough fight to pick, this one just might see the local man lose. Certainly, if he's not at his very best Cook will see his dreams go out the window. Neither guy is a particularly murderous puncher, so a distance fight looks a good bet.

Look for Cook to pull it out in a close one.

Article posted on 11.03.2009



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