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Andy Lee 'in the mix' for Martinez's next fight, says DiBella

Boxing promoter Lou DiBella has hinted at another Irish test for Sergio Martinez, with Andy Lee waiting in the wings.

Image: Tim Larsen/AP/Press Association Images

IRISH EYES MAY be on Sergio Martinez again before too long after promoter Lou DiBella tipped Limerick native Andy Lee as a strong contender for the Argentinian’s next fight.

Martinez showed his class on Saturday night when he held off the game challenge of Matthew Macklin and forced an 11-round stoppage to defend his lineal middleweight title.

A capacity crowd of almost 5,000 fans, many of whom were from Ireland, packed the Theatre at New York’s Madison Square Garden for the fight, which was televised live on HBO.

Although WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr is top on Martinez’s wish-list of potential opponents, DiBella’s success in promoting the Macklin fight and drawing in Irish and Irish-American boxing fans may work in Lee’s favour.

Australia’s Daniel Geale is another possible opponent, DiBella said, but he ruled out a risky fight against either Dmitry Pirog or Gennady Golovkin, both of whom have undefeated records.

“I’m going to say no, because they bring not a dollar to the table,” DiBella said (BoxingScene.com). ”Not that they’re not good fighters, but he’s going to beat them anyway and they bring nothing but risk, and no reward. Zero. It proves nothing.”

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“I’d rather fight Andy Lee, bring it back here [to MSG Theater] and sell the place out again.

Andy’s certainly in the mix. He’s one of the best available middleweights. Andy’s got to be in the mix. And Danny Geale, I mean, he speaks English, you can promote him.

Lee, who has been promised a world title fight in 2012 by DiBella, was originally due to fight in the main undercard event to Martinez-Macklin, but withdrew due to the lack of a suitable opponent. He then made light work of Mexican journeyman Saul “Baby” Duran in a “stay busy fight” earlier this month, defending his NABA title with a quick second-round stoppage.

If Lee and Martinez are to go toe-to-toe, ESPN reports that Boston or a venue in Ireland could both be considered to host the fight, according to DiBella.

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Niall Kelly

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