Martinez plans to denounce WBC president

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 29 2011 02:22 PM | Updated as of Dec 29 2011 11:22 PM

MANILA, Philippines -- World middleweight champion Sergio Martinez of Argentina is planning to hold a press conference in his native country, where he is expected to denounce the comments made by World Boxing Council president Jose Sulaiman regarding women and domestic violence.

Martinez made the announcement through his Twitter account (@maravillabox), saying, "I will address false statements made by the WBC and its deplorable comment regarding violence against women."

Sulaiman was quoted by PhilBoxing.com's Ronnie Nathanielsz as saying that "Beating a lady is highly critical, (but) it is not a major sin or crime."

The WBC president was referring to the domestic violence charge against unbeaten American fighter and WBC welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr., who was sentenced to 90 days in prison after pleading guilty to the said charge.

Martinez's adviser Samson Lewkowickz told RingTV.com that the fighter is "outraged" with Sulaiman's comments.

"Sergio plans to say some things tomorrow, and that is, that definitely, he's very, very disappointed with the WBC," Lewkowickz said.

Martinez is a known supporter of battered women's issues and has visited several women's shelters and domestic violence centers.

"I've gone to several events with Sergio, who has gone to several charity events, and he has refused to get paid for that," Lewkowickz said about Martinez's charitable efforts.

"Sergio has never asked for a dime because he does these things from his heart. Sergio only wants to send a message," he added.

Martinez is widely recognized as the third-best pound-for-pound fighter in the world, following only Mayweather and Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao.

The Argentine boxer is not alone in his criticism of Sulaiman. Michael Woods, a boxing writer for ESPN, said in his blog that the WBC president "stepped over the line" with his comment.

Woods called Sulaiman's comment "jaw-droppingly idiotic." "(Beating a lady is) not a major sin or crime in what universe?" he asked.