Martell can become a real star of the squared circle – Norwich trainer

Iain Martell makes his pro boxing debut next month. Picture: Chris Lakey

Iain Martell makes his pro boxing debut next month. Picture: Chris Lakey - Credit: Archant

Iain Martell is a star of the MMA scene – and next month gets his opportunity to become an equally big name on the boxing circuit.

Martell will make his first appearance as a pro boxer on next Norwich fight night, which has been confirmed as July 22 at the Epic Studios in Magdalen Street.

'Iain's debut has been a while in the making, maybe 18 months or so,' said trainer Graham Everett. 'He has been a star of the MMA scene for some time and I shall be doing everything I can to make him a star of the boxing world.'

Martell has spent hours in the Kickstop Gym under Everett's watchful eye as he makes the transition.

'It's more like a realignment,' said the 26-year-old. 'It is not like you are going from being a footballer to a boxer or a cricketer to a tennis player. An athlete is an athlete - you look across sport and there are just guys who are genetically gifted and they do so well. But with me boxing has always been part of MMA, I have always had great coaching with Graham since I was young and so it is just about refining the details – standing a little differently, landing shots to the body a bit more. There is so much for me to learn and I am soaking it up.

'Boxing has been on the cards for a while but now the stars have aligned and the time is right. Right now my momentum is good, my balance is right and boxing is here for me.'

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The return to Epic Studios should mean a bigger crowd – especially as Martell adds his own followers to those of Craig Poxton – who tops the bill with his Southern Area super-featherweight title defence – Nathan Dale and Zaiphan Morris, as well as the visiting Essex fans.

'I have always been blessed with great fans,' said Martell. 'I have been so lucky and now is another chance for me to put on a great show for those guys. This an opportunity to give them a smile and a buzz.'

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Martell will campaign at cruiserweight, and while it is a division with good opportunities on the route to the top, it's a case of passing the early tests.

'Right now I have to learn,' he said. 'I have to fight these tough guys and get the details right and get the rounds in and gain experience.'

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