Spain’s Kiko Martinez will fight for a featherweight world title Saturday night in Anaheim. His trainer will not be there.
Gaby Sarmiento experienced visa problems attempting to leave Spain this week, Martinez said Wednesday, and he’ll be replaced by veteran Southland trainer Robert Garcia.
Former world champion Martinez, (35-6, 26 knockouts), will fight Leo Santa Cruz (31-0-1, 17 knockouts) for the World Boxing Assn. featherweight title on Showtime.
“At the end of the day, I am the one stepping into the ring against Leo Santa Cruz, not my trainer,” Martinez said.
“It’s me who’s going to defeat Leo Santa Cruz.”
Garcia has trained fighters including Oxnard’s Brandon Rios, Tijuana’s Antonio Margarito, and Mexico’s Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.
Martinez has previously lost title fights against Ireland’s Carl Frampton and England’s Scott Quigg.