Eddie Hearn praises Josh Warrington for 'most important win of his career' against Kiko Martinez

Eddie Hearn reveals Warrington was considering retirement had he lost against Kiko Martinez on Saturday night.

After two disappointing performances against Maurizio Lara, Josh Warrington's fighting career was cast into doubt.

The 31-year-old was under immense pressure after a knockout loss and a draw, and his promoter Eddie Hearn revealed that the Leeds-born fighter was contemplating retirement had he lost again.

However, despite the pressure on his shoulders, Warrington put on a masterful display at the First Direct Arena, stopping Kiko Martinez in the seventh round to regain his IBF featherweight title.

The Yorkshireman is now a two-time world champion, having first won the title back in 2018 against Lee Selby at Elland Road.

With any fear of an early retirement now a distant thought, Warrington can look forward to defending his title.

However, that fear of retirement is something Hearn thinks spurred Warrington on during his fight preparation.

"It's hard to say it was the biggest night of his career because obviously the Selby win at Elland Road was a big night," said Hearn.

"But this was the most important win of his career because they just asked him in there, 'would you have retired if you had lost?' and he was like, 'I don't know'.

"I think he put a lot of pressure on himself in the build-up to that fight. He trained really well.

"It was probably one of the best performances of his career, which is great at this stage of his career because there was a lot of people questioning what he had left.

"It was the look of relief, joy, everything. I knew he was razor sharp because I knew he had trained with the fear of losing."

Warrington's trainer and father Sean O'Hagan praised his son's performance, and claimed there's "endless possibilities" for him now he has returned to winning ways.

"Once again to all the knockers. We keep doing it don't we?" said O'Hagan.

"We were written off tonight. A lot of people were doubting what Josh had left after the Lara loss and that we didn't answer our questions and tick the boxes in the rematch.

"I think we did, just by accepting that rematch. We didn't swerve him. The possibilities are endless now, we'll have to sit down and discuss what's next.

To find out more about what Warrington could do next, read here: What next for Josh Warrington after regaining his featherweight title?

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