Martin Murray v Roberto Garcia: St Helens scrapper will make Mexican pay for call-off
Martin Murray must remain professional as he looks to continue his recent winning form. Betfair's boxing expert Frankie Monkhouse looks at how the best fights of the night will go...
"Murray has stopped only 17 of 41 opponents resulting in a lowly 41% KO average. His work rate often does more damage than his punch power"
Fight week and Martin Murray should've been putting the finishing touches to a camp he hoped would lead to him being crowned middleweight champion of the world, resurrecting his career in the process. Instead the St Helens fighter faces a late change of opponent for the WBC silver belt.
Billy Joe Saunders was forced to pull out of a proposed WBO defence due to injury. Critics say Murray was sacrificed as the Londoner gambled on a fight with Gennady Golovkin. Maybe, maybe not. Fighters have to look out for themselves - no one else is going to in this game - but they also suffer injuries.
The show goes on and at the 02 Arena, Greenwich on Saturday night Murray faces capable Mexican Roberto Garcia at the top of a bill stacked with British talent. The BT Sport cameras are in attendance and Betfair offer betting on the night's main bouts.
Martin Murray v Roberto Garcia - points win smart play
Murray was frustrated by Saunders injury and didn't try to hide it, but he'll remain professional and look to continue his recent winning ways with a 37th career victory in London. The 35-year-old orthodox has lost four times in a run stretching back to September 2007 but only one of those defeats came inside the distance.
His last negative was at the hands of George Groves on points two years ago at this very venue but there's certainly no shame in that. Since then Murray has won three on the trot, two on points and a fourth round TKO over German Arman Torosyan. There's no more than 1/4 on the Betfair Sportsbook about a fourth win. Tight, but that's market best price.
Interestingly, Murray has stopped only 17 of 41 opponents resulting in a lowly 41% KO average. His work rate often does more damage than his punch power and if Garcia isn't fit - coming in as a replacement - he'll be swamped. You've got to give the opponent with 41 wins from 44 starts the benefit of the doubt. A points win looks the smart pick here at 2/5 (Betfair Sportsbook).
Anthony Yarde v Dariusz Sek - early night on the cards
With Saunders calling off, this bout goes close to being the most interesting fight of the night and it could well work out that way. 26-year-old Yarde is one of the hottest prospects in British boxing and steps into the ring with a CV showing 15 wins from 15 starts, 14 KOS. He has set the light heavyweight division alight and many in the know expect him to dominate for years to come.
This is another chance for the young-gun to prove his worth. The WBO European title is on the line as well as the Inter-Continental strap and it'll shunt the Essex-based fighter up the rankings and closer to a world title. Polish opponent Dariusz Sek has lost three times and although he has never been stopped that'll change here. Yarde by KO/TKO makes perfect sense at 2/9 (Betfair Sportsbook).
Daniel Dubois v Tom Little - opponent in big trouble
20 years old, seven fights undefeated, 100% knockout average, 6ft 5inches tall and based at the heartbeat of British boxing, Daniel Dubois is going places and he's in a rush to get there. The heavyweight has gone no further than three rounds so far with his frightening power and speed meaning he's yet to be properly tested since making his pro debut in April 2017.
Tom Little is an experienced sort who has the ability to upset many domestic level fighters, but Dubois is no domestic level fighter and will score another knockout, probably quite quickly too. Take the favourite KO/TKO in the method of victory market or if you're after a bit more have an interest on him winning in the first four rounds at 4/9.