The Belfast feather faces the unheralded Aussie at Windsor Park on Saturday August 18th in what was hoped would be his final contest before a return to world title fights.
IBF champion Josh Warrington was pin-pointed as the next step on the road and the promoter of both, Frank Warren, had earmarked a December fight on neutral ground at the Manchester Arena – which many believe will see BT Sport return to the pay-per-view market.
However, it was far from certain that the Leeds favourite and his team were committed to the plan.
While Warrington [27(6)-0] himself had stated his willingness, the Englishman’s manager, Steve Wood, was less than 100%.
The hugely respected manager, who has guided Warrington from English title level to the sport’s pinnacle, had opined that his man should be in the driving seat.
Noting how Warrington is the champion and that Elland Road football stadium is larger than Windsor Park, Wood had initially suggested that a title fight in Leeds next Summer was the biggest earner and his preference.
This plan would see Warrington defend his title, which he won in a major upset over Lee Selby, at least once before going into a Frampton fight.
However, Wood has since changed his outlook and now seems to be on board with Warren’s plan – with Warrington’s hunger for big fights being the apparent reason for the reconsideration.
Speaking on the Boxing Asylum podcast, Wood outlined how “obviously it would be easy to have a first defence – and he deserves that – but he’s a hungry little man, Josh. He wants to prove that he is top world class elite level.”
“You saw the way he beat Selby and he changed a lot of people’s opinions. Someone like Frampton would be another big defining fight – yeah, we’d prefer Frampton.”
Frampton will, of course, need to first come through Jackson [16(7)-0] next weekend and the Tasmanian can not be underestimated – although, despite some tasty verbal sparring, most see the fight as a relatively straightforward one for ‘The Jackal’.
You can listen to this week’s edition of the Boxing Asylum Nuthouse Podcast in full below: