Matthew Macklin hopes that the uproar surrounding his controversial points defeat to WBA Middleweight Champion Felix Sturm in Germany at the weekend will decrease the chances of David Haye suffering a similar fate against Wladimir Klitschko in Hamburg this Saturday.
Macklin appeared to have done more than enough to rip Sturm's title away in front of a sell out crowd of almost 20,000 at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne only for two of the three scoring judges to deny him his World title dream.
The decision baffled many of those in attendance and the millions watching worldwide on SAT.1 in Germany, Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland and on Epix in the U.S. A viewers poll on the SAT.1 website spoke volumes with 76% of Germans polled believing that Macklin had won the fight as opposed to just 24% for Sturm.
The German media were equally outraged with headlines since the fight such as, "A Sturm of Indignation", "German Boxing Disgrace", "Miscarriage of Justice" and "Fluke Victory".
Macklin hopes that the uproar will benefit David Haye should his clash with Klitschko be decided on the scorecards. "I think David has the power and speed to knock Klitschko out anyway and take it out of the judges hands but if it goes to the scorecards then I think the spotlight will really be on the judges after my fight and hopefully David will get a fair shake," said Macklin.
"I got back from Germany yesterday but the fan's over there were coming up to me and apologising for the decision. I think they have been very embarrassed by it and the German media reports on the fight have reflected that. One of the papers even reported that Felix needed to have TV make up applied so that he would look a little better at the post fight press conference!
"I believe I was the better man on the night and it seems to me that almost everyone aside from those two judges who scored for Sturm saw it the same way. It was a tough fight but I thought I was a clear winner.
"After the fight I asked him for a rematch and he told me 'I'm a man, I will give you a rematch'. He knows I beat him and he's embarrassed by that decision so if he's the fighter I think he is I'm sure he will want to put it right but if not then I won't lose any sleep over it and I will move on. In our hearts we both know that I won that fight hands down. I proved that I belong at the highest level and this has only made me more determined than ever to succeed."
Macklin's manager Brian Peters says that the support from the boxing community worldwide has been heartening. "A lot of very respected people within the sport have spoken out on the decision and it's been great to receive that kind of support. Thomas Hauser and Dan Rafael are among two of the most widely read commentators on the sport and they both had Matthew winning by scores of 117 - 111 and Lennox Lewis said it was 'highway robbery' and one of the worst decisions he'd seen. The former World Heavyweight title challenger Axel Schulz was commentating for German TV and he had Matthew winning by three rounds.
"We've been inundated with emails from German fans expressing their disgust at the decision and Felix's own Facebook page has been flooded with negative comments as well from Germans so that tells it's own story."
Team Macklin's views have been supported by some heavy hitters in the boxing world from those inside and outside the ropes via Twitter and other outlets. A selection of those include:
Lennox Lewis - Former undisputed World Heavyweight Champion
"Highway Robbery! One of the worst decisions I've seen. Macklin won that fight hands down."
Lou DiBella - Promoter of WBC Middleweight Champion, Sergio Martinez
"GREAT JOB Matthew Macklin. Team Martinez respects your performance and your heart, CHAMP. Sergio Martinez will not go to Germany for Sturm!"
Carl Froch - Current WBC Super Middleweight champion and upcoming super six finalist
"Just got home & watched Macklin beat Sturm 116-112 at least. Jim WATT was you watching?!"
Joe Calzaghe - Former World Super Middleweight Champion
"Thought Macklin won! But not surprised he didn't get decision. Predictable home town decision!"
Chris Mannix - Sports Illustrated's Boxing Writer
"Welcome to boxing, everyone. 2 judges gave 8 rounds to Sturm, an absolutely disgusting scoring - home turf decision."
"Feel bad for Macklin. Worked hard for that opportunity. Hope the rematch is with better judges on EpixHD."
"This is why Felix Sturm rarely fights outside of Germany. How two judges can have that big a gap in the scoring is mind boggling. Matthew Macklin was the aggressor, landed cleaner shots and did phenomenal body work. Fought the best fight he possibly could. Sturm was sluggish and didn’t get it going until the later rounds. In any other country, this fight is a clear decision for Matthew Macklin."
Al Bernstein - Veteran Boxing analyst for Showtime in the US
"Just watched Sturm - Macklin on Epix. One of worst decisions I have ever seen - maybe THE worst."
"Macklin threw twice as many punches, landed at least twice as many and pushed Sturm back whole fight."
Jean-Marcel Nartz - Germany's European Boxing Union Council member
"The decision was a blatant miscarriage of justice."