Carl Frampton not willing to wait on Windsor Park

Back in January of 2017, in the build-up to his rematch with Leo Santa Cruz in Las Vegas, Carl Frampton [25(14)-1(0)] declared that he wanted “big fights only” from there on in.

Of course, with boxing especially, things change. Out went the McGuigans and in came Frank Warren at the tail-end of last Summer and now Frampton approaches a dream fight date at Windsor Park.

‘The Jackal’ faces Australian Luke Jackson [16(7)-0] on August 18th, defending the WBO interim featherweight title at the football ground.

Going back to his 2017 declaration, it is a big fight in terms of scale – but, in terms of significance and opposition, it does not fit the criteria.

However, rather than lament this fact, the mature Frampton takes a reasoned and considered view.

“A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush,” as the old saying goes.

A fight at Windsor Park against a little-known opponent is better than waiting another year in the hope of securing a major, major fight at the stadium.

“You never know what happens in this game,” noted Frampton. “It could be the one and only time I get to fight at Windsor Park.

“There was talk of waiting, but I wanted to do it because opportunities like this don’t come around too often. It is a dream of mine, I wanted to do it and that is the be all and end all.”

“It is going to be a special occasion for myself and my family. For the people who are going to come and watch it there is going to be a top quality undercard as well and I think it will be a night to remember for Belfast.”

“This is a dream for me and it is something I have talked about for a long time.

Acknowledging the difficulty in finding a world class, recognisable opponent, Frampton described how ““I imagine some people will have been expecting a different opponent, but the fact I am not fighting a world champion is the fault of nobody.”

“Josh Warrington beating Lee Selby sort of threw a spanner in the works for us because I think Selby would’ve come to Belfast.”

“Oscar Valdez is out injured, Gary Russell has just fought and Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares also just fought. That’s it really; the top guys just aren’t available. It is good for me to get a defence in here.”

Frampton, who is in line to challenge IBF champ Warrington in Manchester in December should he win v Jackson, feels the Tasmanian is a worthy foe.

The Belfast 31-year-old said that “I think a lot of people will expect to just to beat him up and blow him away but he is ranked No.4 by the WBO, he is an Olympian with a good pedigree and is undefeated.”

“So I will need to be ready and in the shape of my life. It is a big occasion with being at Windsor Park and that is the real thing here. I think that people who are coming to watch me perform at Windsor Park deserve for me to be in the shape of my life and put on a good show.”

“That is what I intend to do and then move on and hopefully fight for a world title before the end of the year.


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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on, Boxing News,, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: