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Dublin: 2°C Wednesday 14 April 2021
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'I have to deliver' - Belfast title fight is a dream come true for Frampton

Belfast’s Carl Frampton will face Kiko Martinez for the IBF world super-bantamweight title on 6 September.

Frampton is unbeaten in his 18 professional fights to date -- but number 19 will be his biggest night yet.
Frampton is unbeaten in his 18 professional fights to date -- but number 19 will be his biggest night yet.
Image: Picture courtesy of Cyclone Promotions

CARL FRAMPTON IS ready to make his childhood dreams come true — by winning a world title in front of 20,000 fans in his own backyard.

The pride of Tiger’s Bay is set for a mouthwatering rematch against Kiko Martinez on 6 September in Belfast.

Frampton’s reputation rocketed when he KOd the Spaniard in February 2013 but this is no straight-to-video sequel. With the IBF super-bantamweight title up for grabs this time, it’s pure box office.

And Frampton is adamant that there will be no unexpected plot twists.

He said: “[Martinez] is looking for redemption because he got embarrassed last time with all his talk before the fight – what he was going to do to me, that I couldn’t knock his nephew out.

“I outboxed him, outfought him and then knocked him out. It’s going to be a tough fight but I’m expecting the same result.

He may be a better fighter now, slightly, but nothing dramatic has changed. I think this has all the ingredients for a proper ding-dong.

As the WBC’s mandatory challenger, Frampton was expected to take his world title shot against Leo Santa Cruz.

When it became clear that Santa Cruz wanted to delay that fight until early next year, Frampton and manager Barry McGuigan switched their focus to an earlier date against Martinez.

A venue has not been confirmed yet but the Balmoral Showgrounds, which could accommodate over 15,000 fans, is a strong contender.

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Source: Cyclone Promotions

With plans to televise the card on HBO in America and also in South America already in progress, McGuigan believes that this will be the start of something special.

“There will only be one winner,” he said. “I think this kid can be a superstar and this, 6 September, is the start of it. After that we are into mega fights.

He added: “We want big fights in America and we want to bring big fights to Belfast.

“Money is important but recognition on the other side of the pond is important too.

I think Frampton will be a sensation over there because of how he fights – aggressively but defensively. He is a smart, clever, attacking fighter who can also fight off the back foot.

“I think the Americans will love him, maybe even to the point that they don’t want him to box over here any more.”

It’s a glittering future — and Frampton knows that he has to seize his moment.

“I have been boxing since I was seven, so to get to have the chance to fight and win a world title at home is a dream come true.

“It’s on the doorstep now so I have to deliver.”

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About the author:

Niall Kelly

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