Erislandy Lara and Vanes Martirosyan fight for the right to face Canelo on Saturday
Last Updated: 08/11/12 1:15pm
Vanes Martirosyan: Facing his biggest test to date in Erislandy Lara
There is plenty on the line when Erislandy Lara takes on the unbeaten Vanes Martirosyan in Las Vegas on Saturday night.
The pair clash at the Wynn Resort with the victor becoming mandatory challenger to WBC light-middleweight champion Saul Alvarez.
For many, Lara should also come into the fight undefeated after he was on the wrong end of a dubious decision against Paul Williams last year.
Those same critics are concerned the Cuban exile is facing a similar scenario with Martiroysan being the 'house' fighter under promoter Top Rank.
However, trainer Ronnie Shields says his fighter can only focus on the man in front of him, and not the three at ringside.
"Throughout the entire training camp, we've been focused solely on what we have to do to beat Vanes Martirosyan, not the judges at ringside," he said.
"If the fight goes to a decision, it's out of our hands. Lara's job is to stick to the gameplan. He knows what to do.
"If he executes the gameplan to perfection on fight night, then the judges will only be able to see the fight one way...and that's a decisive victory for Erislandy Lara."
For all that Martirosyan is the one defending an unbeaten 32-fight streak, it is Lara who goes into the fight an overwhelming favourite.