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Frampton rivals secure new fight dates

Two of the major names in the featherweight division have secured new fight dates, seemingly ruling themselves out of a fight with Belfast’s Carl Frampton [23(14)-1(0)].

The Jackal has been out of the ring since his WBA featherweight title loss to Leo Santa Cruz [33(18)-1(0)-1] in January. In that time he has seen a Belfast homecoming fall through and has split with long-time manager Barry McGuigan.

Frampton is currently in Las Vegas to attend the Floyd Mayweather v Conor McGregor fight, and it is thought that he will meet with potential new backers while here.

The Tiger’s Bay 30 year old wants to go straight back into a title fight, but has seen some potential avenues seemingly closed off.

It has been confirmed that Santa Cruz and former three-weight world champion Abner Mares [30(15)-2(1)-1] will both fight in separate contests on a Premier Boxing Champions card in Southern California on Saturday October 14th.

The Mexican-American duo had come close to agreeing an October 7th rematch to their 2015 title fight, however the talks would break down at the last minute, reportedly due to Santa Cruz’s financial demands and his desire to have a warm-up fight first.

Therefore, the respective match-ups this Autumn look set to build up a rematch between the pair in early 2018.

No specific venue or opponents have been confirmed – indeed Frampton could theoretically be the man in the opposite corner – however it seems likely that t

In terms of the other big names in the division, WBC titlist Gary Russell Jr has a fight lined up in November, WBO champ Oscar Valdez defends against Genesis Servania on September 22nd, and former Frampton opponent Scott Quigg is set for a fight in Monaco on November 4th.

IBF champion Lee Selby [25(9)-1(0)] remains the fighter that would seem to line up perfectly for Frampton. The Welshman overcame his mandatory challenger Johnathan Victor Barros last month, and both fighters have called for a match-up over the last year.

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie