Brian Rose reveals plans to fight legendary boxer in Spain and to honour Brian London in Blackpool
Blackpool boxer Brian Rose has an idea to immortalise the great Brian London in the town as he also works to enhance his own boxing legacy.
Former British champion Rose, 36, has announced his next fight against a legend of the sport.
He will return to Spain to take on former undisputed world champion Sergio Martinez, from Argentina, on September 18 over 10 rounds in Madrid.
Rose won in Barcelona in March, his first fight for 18 months, beating Clavero Lopez over six rounds on points, taking world title challenger Rose’s record to 32 victories from 39 fights.
Now 46 and a resident of Spain for almost 20 years, Martinez is a former IBO and WBC world champions at super-welterweight, whose reign as WBC and WBO world lineal middleweight champion from 2010-14 is one of the longest in the history of the division.
Rose told The Gazette: “We’ve been offered an amazing opportunity and I’m really looking forward to it. There’s not a title at stake but it’s a chance to beat a fighter who was the best in the world (in 2011 southpaw Martinez was voted the world’s third-best pound-for-pound boxer after Floyd Mayweather Jnr and Manny Pacquiao).
“Hopefully we can arrange a flight to Spain this time. We drove to Barcelona and I’d do that again to get the fight.”
Before going into his training camp, Rose was “honoured and privileged” to join London’s family at the heavyweight great’s funeral in Blackpool last week.
And after a moving service, Rose’s thoughts turned to a lasting memorial to the former British and Commonwealth champion, who challenged Floyd Patterson and Muhammad Ali for the world title.
Rose explained: “I was honoured to be accepted by Brian’s family at the funeral and I’d love to have a statue of Brian built at Stanley Park, close to where he lived. I’ve spoken to the council about it.
“Brian will always be remembered anyway but a statue would make even more people aware of what he did for the sport and the town. It would be amazing.
“We had a lot in common: I was the first British champion from Blackpool after Brian, 50 years later.”
But Rose is hungry for more achievements in the sport and has been fully focused on the Martinez fight since going into his training camp on Tuesday.
He added: “I’m becoming a bit of a Spanish citizen and I don’t think it’s a fight anyone expected. They were expecting Scott Fitzgerald (from Preston) and we’ve tried and tried to get that fight on, but I can’t wait around.
“I’m always ticking over but I went into camp this week, which meant moving out of the family home.”
Brian runs the BR Boxing and Fitness gym in the town centre and added: “The gym has been going well since we reopened and membership is back up. We’re just out to help the community and the kids.”
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