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Hatton vs Senchenko undercard: Martin Murray dialed in for win to set up Sergio Martinez fight

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Martin Murray must win on Saturday to set up a shot at Sergio Martinez in April 2013, and says he's ready to face that level of competition again.

Alex Grimm

Martin Murray surprised a lot of folks when he stayed competitive with Felix Sturm in December 2011, ultimately leaving Germany with a disputed draw in a very good fight that many felt he'd deserved to win. Now, as he's one win away on Saturday from earning a shot at world champion Sergio Martinez, Murray says he's ready to get back to that level:

"Martinez is the type of fighter I want to face but I must beat Navarro first. My team have spoken to Martinez’s camp but everything was kept away from me because of Saturday’s fight."

The Navarro that Murray refers to is Venezuela's Jorge Navarro (12-0, 10 KO), a 27-year-old who has built a record against very soft competition, fighting all but one of his pro bouts in Panama, the other in his native country. Navarro's best win to date was an 11-round decision over Jaime Barboza, a low-end Dominican gatekeeper.

Murray (24-0-1, 10 KO) is the heavy favorite on Saturday, but crazier things happen all the time in boxing. He's got his chance to set up his chance, so to speak, and of the options mentioned by Lou DiBella to face the returning Martinez in April in Argentina, Murray is by far the most attractive, easily besting the likes of Domenico Spada, Kerry Hope, or Jose Miguel Torres. Murray is a top ten type in the division, which the others cannot claim.

In other words, Martinez vs Murray is an acceptable fight. The others would be very, very weak.