Sergio Martinez continues to thrive well into the twilight of his storied career.
The 46-year-old former lineal middleweight champion claimed his fourth straight win since his launched comeback more than two years, the latest in a lopsided ten-round, unanimous decision over Macaulay McGowan. Scores 99-89, 99-89 and 98-90 in favor of Martinez, who scored knockdowns in rounds seven and ten in their middleweight bout Thursday evening at Wizink Center in Madrid, Spain.
A brief scare was averted in the opening round, as Martinez hit the deck twenty seconds into the contest. The sequence was accurately ruled a slip, thus ending the lone piece of momentum enjoyed by McGowan, a journeyman from Manchester, England who traveled outside the United Kingdom for the first time as a pro.
Martinez remained in full control from there, flicking his right jab from his southpaw stands while hands held down low. McGowan was unable to defend against the weapon or Martinez’s straight left hand, enough getting through to bloody the nose of the visiting Brit.
The first knockdown of the bout came late in round seven. Martinez positioned McGowan at center ring, where he shot his jab and followed with a straight left hand to the body. McGowan briefly froze before turning away and falling to a knee in taking an eight count. Martinez boxed his way through the rest of the round and for much of the balance of the fight.
A stunning overhand left by Martinez sent McGowan to the canvas in a heap with less than 0:20 in the tenth and final round. The crowd erupted, sensing a potential knockout finish, only for McGowan to beat the count and make it to the final bell. It resulted in his third straight defeat, as McGowan falls to 14-2-1 (3KOs).
Martinez advances to 55-3-2 (30KOs) with his fourth straight victory. The former lineal and two-time WBC middleweight champion previously retired from the ring following his tenth-round stoppage loss to Miguel Cotto, relinquishing his WBC and lineal middleweight championship in their June 2014 encounter at Madison Square Garden. A hobbled version of Martinez showed up that night, as he was dominated by the Puerto Rican superstar through nine-plus rounds after having previously defended his lineal championship six times.
A comeback was teased for years before Martinez returned on the other side of the global pandemic. A win over Jose Miguel Fandino in August 2020 launched his current four-fight win streak. The entirety of his latest run has taken place in his home country of Spain, having managed to resurface as the number-four ranked contender to the WBA middleweight title held by Japan’s Ryota Murata (16-2, 13KOs).
Martinez-McGowan was streamed live by Probellum through its official website.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox