Josh Warrington stops Kiko Martinez in round seven to win IBF featherweight title

Warrington-Martinez_2603 Mark Robinson

LEEDS, ENGLAND — Josh Warrington is the new IBF world featherweight champion after stopping Kiko Martinez in round seven in front of a sold-out crowd at the First Direct Arena in Leeds.

In his first win in over a year, Warrington came out like a raging bull in the first round. Throwing quick combinations and huge left hooks, Martinez was subject to a mass assault by "The Leeds Warrior" and knocked down to the canvas. Warrington continued to assert his dominance on Martinez, playing with the Spaniard like he was a child's soft toy in the second.

Calmness then ensued, and while Martinez looked to land the right hand which won him the IBF belt against Kid Galahad last November, Warrington's loyal fanbase roared him through. 

As expected, with the fast start, Warrington had slowed down significantly. This gave Martinez brief hope he could do something in the fight, and he did start to land some punches. But there was one area of huge concern, a cut near Martinez's left eye. Warrington began to find his speed and power in round seven after being subjected to some Martinez body shots in the sixth. 

After rocking Martinez early on, Warrington unleashed another barrage of quick combinations. He then backed up Martinez onto the ropes like he did for most of the fight and unloaded before the referee ended the contest.

Warrington collapsed to his knees in both celebration and relief. This was an opportunity he didn't see coming, becoming a two-time world champion so quickly after a loss and a draw to Mauricio Lara.

There will be some huge nights to come. Whether it be a unification fight with WBA champion Leigh Wood, the long-awaited pilgrimage to America, or a trilogy fight with Lara. Warrington and his fans will march on together towards whatever opponent stands in their way. 



Re-live the best moments from tonight's card below. 


Round 7: Warrington wins via stoppage

Josh Warrington is the new IBF world featherweight champion after the referee brings a halt to the contest in round seven.

Warrington drops to his knees in celebration and relief for his first win in over a year.

As expected, it's bouncing at the First Direct Arena in Leeds. 



Round 6: Both receive warnings

Both Kiko Martinez and Josh Warrington are warned about the use of their heads by the referee.

Martinez edges the round due to his body shots.

10-9 Martinez 

Round 5: Martinez cut

The signs of the brutality of this contest are beginning to show on Kiko Martinez.

The Spaniard has a serious cut by his left eye. Will it be an area for Warrington to exploit?

10-9 Warrington 

Round 4: Warrington needs to remain calm

After what was a wild start, Josh Warrington has certainly slowed down.

While he is still enjoying success, he needs to stay disciplined after being warned by the referee about using his head and shoulders on the ropes.

10-9 Warrington 

Round 3: Martinez improves

A calmer round compared to the previous two. 

Kiko Martinez showed some improvement and is looking to land the right hand, which won him the IBF title in November.

10-9 Martinez

Round 2: Warrington continues to dominate

Kiko Martinez is really struggling. You wouldn't think he's the defending champion.

Warrington is pushing the Spaniard all over the ring and landing big shots.

10-9 Warrington 

Round 1: Warrington knocks down Martinez

Josh Warrington has come flying out in round one.

There was a relentless barrage of punches on Kiko Martinez, who was rocked multiple times and knocked down by a Warrington right hand.

A perfect start for The Leeds Warrior!

10-8 Warrington


And we're underway

Kiko Martinez vs. Josh Warrington for the IBF featherweight title is underway!

Main event is moments away

Sweet Caroline is being sung in the arena. It must mean the main event isn't too far away.


Ebanie Bridges is a world champion

Ebanie Bridges is the new IBF women's bantamweight champion after beating Maria Cecilia Roman on a majority decision. 

As expected, Bridges work rate was relentless and dominated the early stages.

When Roman started to come back into the fight, it was too late. Bridges had built a healthy enough lead on the cards meaning the Argentine would need a knockout or stoppage to force the win. 

One judge scored the fight 100-91, while the two other judges scored the fight 97-93. 


Maxi Hughes retains IBO title

Maxi Hughes has successfully retained his IBO world lightweight title after beating Ryan Walsh on the judges' scorecards.

It was a very measured performance from Hughes, and it looks like focusing on his boxing full-time has had its benefits. 

Like the Jovanni Straffon fight in September, Hughes wasn't afraid to mix it up and brawl, but tonight he was a lot more disciplined and didn't get sucked into the 'fight' Walsh was calling for at Thursday's press conference.

Walsh stood his ground throughout the fight, but it was clear that there would be only one winner from the first few rounds. 

The judges scored the fight 120-108, 119-109, and 118-100, all in favour of Maxi Hughes. 


Dalton Smith victorious with a round 10 stoppage

Dalton Smith now moves to 10-0 after Ray Moylette's corner threw in the towel in the tenth and final round.

Smith was the superior technician, but Moylette gave a good account of himself even though his work rate decreased in the latter stages, which allowed Smith to land more successful punches and in the end batter Moylette into submission with the two knockdowns in round 10, prompting the white towel from the Irishman's corner team. 

While it was an impressive technical performance from Smith, two low blows in rounds seven and eight respectively took some shine off Smith's tenth win as a professional. 


Warrington has arrived

The already electric crowd here in Leeds has taken the noise levels up a notch when shown the arrival of Josh Warrington.

Warrington attempts to become a two-time world champion when he takes on Kiko Martinez for the IBF featherweight title in tonight's main event. 



The champ is in the building

IBF world featherweight champion Kiko Martinez has arrived at the First Direct Arena in Leeds.

It's set to be a hostile atmosphere when he steps into the ring to face Josh Warrington and his 13,000 strong, loyal fanbase in tonight's main event.


Skye Nicolson moves to 2-0

It's a successful UK debut for Skye Nicolson, who made easy work of Bec Connolly.

The Australian was simply too slick and mobile for her English counterpart. 

Referee Mark Lyson scored the bout 60-54 in Nicolson's favour. 


Nicolson vs. Connolly to get underway shortly

The first fight of tonight's main card is moments away.

It sees Skye Nicolson make her UK debut against Bec Connolly. 

Before the bell results

Before tonight's main card gets underway, there have already been three fights on Before the Bell.

Calum French managed a third-round stoppage against Angelo Turco, while Mali Wright and Corey O'Regan were awarded wins via the judges' scorecards. 

Good evening and welcome

Good evening and welcome to DAZN News' coverage of Martinez vs. Warrington 2 at the First Direct Arena in Leeds.

Tonight's bill has several world title fights, including Maxi Hughes' first defense of his IBO lightweight title and Ebanie Bridges going for women's bantamweight.

This builds up to the much-anticipated rematch between Kiko Martinez and Josh Warrington for the IBF featherweight title.

Stay tuned to DAZN News for live updates, results, and highlights from tonight's card. 

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