Martin Murray and Nuhu Lawal will face off for the vacant WBA Continental middleweight title over a scheduled 12 rounds at the Salle des Etoiles in Monte Carlo this Saturday, the 12th.
Lawal is a late replacement for Dmitrii Chudinov, who pulled out due to illness. An injured Arthur Abraham, Murray’s original opponent, also gave it a miss. Abraham beat Murray by split decision in November 2015, thus successfully defending his WBO World super middleweight championship.
Thirty-four-year-old Murray has fought out of his native St. Helens, Merseyside, the United Kingdom, since 2007 (33-4-1, 16 KOs). He’s won several regional and minor titles, most recently the then-vacant WBA Inter-Continental super middleweight belt by stopping Jose Miguel Torres via fifth-round TKO in September 2015. He last fought this June, challenging George Groves for the WBA International super middleweight title, losing by unanimous decision.
Fighting out of Germany by way of Nigeria, 34-year-old Lawal is an undefeated five-year ring vet (23-0, 13 KOs). Twelfth-ranked by the WBA, he won that sanctioning body’s then-vacant Inter-Continental middleweight title in his most recent fight, this July, by knocking out Istvan Szili in the sixth.
Murray is looking to get back into contention for a world title, following his disappointing loss to Groves.
“Four weeks before I boxed George, I was flying in the gym,” says Murray. “If I’d fought him then, the outcome would have been completely different. I peaked and then I got ill.”
“The desire and hunger is still there,” continues Murray, “and I know I am only one win away from getting another shot.”
This article was penned by the author who is not related to the WBA and the statements, expressions or opinions referenced herein are that of the author alone and not the WBA.