Rick Reeno of BoxingScene.com reports that the WBC has notified all the involved parties that they have set up a March 13 purse bid in Mexico City for a fight between body junior middleweight titlist Vernon Forrest and interim beltholder Sergio Martinez. If Forrest elects to take a different fight, he will be stripped and the full title status awarded to Martinez.
38-year old Forrest (41-3, 29 KO) won the title originally in 2007, when he routed former welterweight champion Carlos Baldomir for the title that Floyd Mayweather Jr. had vacated. He lost it in his second defense to Sergio Mora, but beat Mora in a September 2008 rematch.
Martinez (44-1-2, 24 KO) was recently robbed of a win over Kermit Cintron, which was scored a draw. He is only four years Forrest's junior in terms of age, but has had far less wear and tear on his body.
Forrest is one of several names currently being considered for a shot at middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik this summer. That's the only fight where I couldn't fault him for not just fighting Martinez, because he'd surely make more money to take on Pavlik. That lame Cayman Islands proposal Gary Shaw tried to swing was insulting and painted Forrest as a coward, and I don't think Vernon is one. Trying to wrangle money out of something in the past instead of fighting nameless Martinez was one thing, but now everyone's tied up and only a Pavlik fight works as an excuse.
Put up or shut up time for Shaw and Forrest.