Tickets for the IBF Heavyweight title fight between champion Charles Martin and Olympic gold medalist Anthony Joshua sold out in just 90 seconds on Friday ahead of their clash at The O2 in London on April 9, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Martin travels to England for the first defense of the title that he landed in Brooklyn in January against Vyacheslav Glazkov, and the California-based St Louis powerhouse has told Joshua that he’ll knock him out to retain his title – and take his fans in the process.
“I’m strong and I’ll be ready to KO him and win over his fans,” said Martin. “The boxing scene here is booming and I want to be a part of it.
“It’s just business – and I’ll show on the night that I mean business. I will return to the UK in April in phenomenal shape, ready for battle. He’s a pretty specimen and those muscles are fine and dandy, but when he gets tired, I get stronger, when he starts to go downhill. There’s no fear in me. I’ve been walking this earth for 29 years now, I am afraid of no man. I want what he’s got – the praise, the attention and the fans – plain and simple.”
Martin brings 21 KOs from his 23 wins to the Greenwich venue that Joshua has turned into his hometown fortress. The London 2012 Super-Heavyweight king as recorded six of his 15 KO wins at the arena, with the latest in December against Dillian Whyte – but Martin says that fight, and his own win over Glazkov, has no bearing on April’s showdown.
“People say you are only as good as your last fight, but that’s in the past,” said Martin. “When he’s in there with me I’m going to keep my eyes on him, stay sharp – it’s not him and Dillian Whyte, it’s him and Charles Martin, I’m going to study him in my camp and I’ll keep my eyes on him until the job is done.”
Further, the Joshua vs. Martin fight will be sponsored by the UK’s leading bookmaker William Hill.
Joshua said: “It’s so soon but when the opportunity presented itself it was something we had to look at, as Charles Martin called me out. When I go out to fight I go out to fight, I go out to knock people out and that’s the same with all my opponents, that’s why they’ve always been entertaining.”
Alex O’Shaughnessy, Chief Marketing Officer at William Hill said, “Martin v Joshua is going to be one of the biggest sporting events this spring and we’re thrilled to be associated with it.”
“We’ve made Anthony Joshua a firm favorite to claim the world title but we expect the odds to contract as we get closer to fight night.”
William Hill’s Joshua vs. Martin Betting Odds
- Bout odds: (William Hill bet) 1/7 Anthony Joshua, 9/2 Charles Martin, 33/1 Draw
- On points: 4/1 Joshua, 14/1 Martin
- 2/7 Joshua by KO, TKO, DQ
- 13/2 Martin by KO, TKO, DQ