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Headbanger – Carl Frampton recalls Warrington Rule-Breaking

Carl Frampton wishes referees were more aware of Josh Warrington’s tendency to use his when he fought the Leeds man back in 2018.

The ‘Warrington headbutt’ has become a topic of discussion over the last number of years with the last three men to share the ring with him – Mauricio Lara, Kiko Martinez and Luis Alberto Lopez – all complaining about use of the head during and after their respective fights with the former two time world champion.

Indeed, Mexican Lopez, who defeated Warrington in Leeds earlier this month to claim the IBF featherweight world title, said he won’t rematch the Brit because he is a ‘dirty fighter’.

The belt holder Michael Conlan now has in his sights went as far as to say: “He doesn’t deserve to be in pro boxing. With his fighting style, he can cause an accident to other boxers. He shouldn’t be allowed in boxing.”

Frampton did mention Warrington’s head following his world title defeat to the popular Leeds man back in 2018, suggesting a head clash early in the fight had a bearing on the outcome.

However, it’s not something he dwelled on, nor was it something fans, pundits, or the media latched onto, which was pointed out by one of Ireland’s greatest boxers pointed out in his popular Sunday Life column this week.

Frampton has never looked for excuses for the reverse against a fighter he has always expressed respect for, but he does hint that he wouldn’t of minded the referee being more aware of Warrington’s head antics.

“Josh has received a lot of criticism once again due to his use of the head, but I don’t remember the same criticism when we fought despite my head being up like a bap afterwards!

“The use of his head is something he’s always seemed to get away with, but that is beginning to change. He bulls forward with the head and seems to disguise it quite well, but if you are getting away with it then boxing is a case of win at all costs so good luck to him.

“I’d imagine that Lopez and many others including the media are now starting to draw attention to it, so it seems referees are beginning to notice.”

The BT Sport pundit feels Warrington may be at the start of a slide and also said he would be a great opponent for Conlan if the Belfast man can’t get a world title shot.

“Outside of this, it wasn’t a good performance from Josh and there may be a sense that he’s at the same stage where I was when we fought – just on the downward slope as he’s been at a high level for such a long time, but it’s hard to stay there.

“I’m not saying this is the end for him, but this is going to be difficult for him to bounce back from although should Mick Conlan be unable to get a world title fight next, perhaps that could be made as it would be a monster fight.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years