‘The Jackal’ will headline at the Belfast football stadium on Saturday August 18th and it is being reported that he will defend his WBO interim featherweight belt versus Australian Luke Jackson.
Unbeaten in 16, a 2012 Olympian, ranked #5 with the WBO, and a managerial stablemate of Frampton, Jackson fits the bill in a number of ways – however, many have been underwhelmed with the prospect of the 33-year-old Tasmanian manning the opposition corner in 10 weeks time.
In many ways, Frampton’s team have had their hands tied, with all the world champions ruled out through injury or scheduling. – although some have argued that there are still a handful of better foes available foes.
Many eggs were in the Lee Selby basket, with Team Frampton anticipating that the Welshman would easily defend his IBF title versus Josh Warrington last month then come to Windsor three months later. Selby, of course, was defeated by Warrington in a gruelling battle at Elland Road.
The focus on Selby showed arguably a lack of foresight. Some suggested that Frampton should make a temporary move to super feather and attempt to make history as a three-weight world champion but, around the time of Selby-Warrington, match-ups were already made for the long-vacant WBO and IBF belts which ruled out this option.
Frampton, though, is taking an ‘it is what it is’ approach and is just happy to be fulfilling a life-long dream by fighting at Windsor Park.
“It means the world to me. It’s something I’ve dreamed about for a long time. I feel it should’ve happened last year but it’s happening now.”
“I’d rather it was a world title but nobody’s to blame – all the champions have recently fought and Warrington beating Selby threw a spanner in the works because Selby would’ve taken the fight.”
Following an impressive win over four-weight world champion Nonito Donaire at the SSE Odyssey Arena in April, Frampton is keen to continue showing he is one of the top fighters in the division ahead of a mooted title fight in Manchester with Josh Warrington this December.
“I’ve loads left,” he promised. “My last performance was the second best of my career after the first Leo Santa Cruz fight. I feel like I’m enjoying it more and while I’m still performing, I’ll do it as long as I can.”