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Carl Frampton wins prestigious boxing Fighter of the Year award

THE RING Magazine formally recognised the Belfast boxer’s achievements.

Frampton kicks off his 2017 with a rematch against Santa Cruz.
Frampton kicks off his 2017 with a rematch against Santa Cruz.
Image: Presseye/William Cherry/INPHO

CARL FRAMPTON WAS today named THE RING Magazine Fighter of the Year for 2016.

The Belfast man had a 2016 to remember, making history to become a two-weight world champion.

Manny Pacquiao and  Vasyl Lomachenko were among the names he beat to the award.

“Obviously it’s a huge honor,” Frampton told the publication after he was crowned winner. “Toward the end of the year I picked up Fighter of the Year on some websites but THE RING Magazine, that’s the one. I’m very, very proud of that.”

“I had an amazing year last year. I unified at 122 and moved up and fought a great fighter at featherweight in Leo Santa Cruz. The year went pretty much to plan. It couldn’t have went better.”

‘The Jackal’ defeated the previously unbeaten Leo Santa Cruz in July to win the WBA featherweight title, following up his super-bantamweight title win over England’s Scott Quigg in February.

Subsequently, Frampton etched his name into history as he became the first Northern Ireland fighter to win world titles at two weights.

The 29-year-old is set for an rematch with Santa Cruz in Las Vegas on 28 January. Following this and considering he’s defended his title accordingly, he’s hoping to become the first Irish three-weight world champion having matched the achievement of Steve Collins.

“So the final tally: Two fights against two elite, previously unbeaten opponents in hostile territory, two victories,” the publication concluded.

“No other fighter had that kind of year. That’s why Frampton edged fellow candidates Terence Crawford, Roman Gonzalez, Vasyl Lomachenko and Manny Pacquiao for Fighter of the Year honors.”

Meanwhile, nine other categories were decided:

FIGHT OF THE YEAR – Francisco Vargas D 12 Orlando Salido

KNOCKOUT OF THE YEAR – Canelo Alvarez KO 6 Amir Khan

ROUND OF THE YEAR – Skender Halili vs. Jason Thompson, Round 2

UPSET OF THE YEAR – Joe Smith Jr. vs. Andrzej Fonfara, KO 1

COMEBACK OF THE YEAR – Andre Ward

TRAINER OF THE YEAR – Arnulfo Obando

PROSPECT OF THE YEAR – Erickson Lubin

EVENT OF THE YEAR – The death of Muhammad Ali

MOST INSPIRATIONAL – Bernard Hopkins

The original piece was updated at 18.52, due to a mistake in the copy surrounding Frampton’s rematch with Santa Cruz.

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Emma Duffy

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