JULY 4 Jonny Stapleton
Carl Frampton is readying himself for a September 10 bout with Kiko Martinez and is planning to become European super bantamweight champion on the under card of Paul McCloskey’s WBA interim title fight.
A deal has yet to be signed with the Spaniard, who is promoted by Brian Peters, but negotiations are under way and the Belfast star is confident he will be challenging the three time continental champ in just his eleventh fight.
In fact so assured is Frampton that he will be facing ‘Mini Tyson’, the fighter who had Bernard Dunne gone in 86 seconds, that he is currently training with Martinez in mind.
“I am training for Kiko Martinez now. Gerry Storey has watched him and is working on tactics. We will be ready for him. Nothing is signed but I am hopeful the fight will be made. I let Barry deal with all the negotiations, but they are in talks at the minute. It seems both camps want the fight and once no options are added on, on their end then I am sure it will be made,” the smart and likeable Frampton told Mirror Sport before suggesting the fight will be part of a mega Belfast card.
“Barry has good connections with Matchroom and they are running a show in Belfast on September 10. Eddie Hearn wants a big bill and a quality show. I think with me fighting for the European title against Kiko Martinez and Paul McCloskey fighting the WBA interim belt we would pack the Odyssey Arena out.”
A Frampton Martinez continental clash has been on the agenda for over six months now and the Tiger Bay native’s manager, Barry McGugian twice turned it down. After rejecting Peters first approach for business reasons the Irish boxing legend rebuffed a second attempt to make the fight claiming it might be too soon for his charge to clash with an improved Martinez.
The hot prospect, however stressed that having reviewed his display against the awkward Robbie Turley and consulting with the team, McGuigan changed his mind. The former super featherweight champion of the world now fully supports the idea the Jackal is ready to devour the Alicante native and steal the belt that once sat proudly around the waist of Bernard Dunne and Willie Casey.
And Frampton himself assures the Odyssey Arena will be jumping when he defeats the man, who shocked and silenced Bernard Dunne’s famously raucous Point Theatre following, to become champion of Europe.
“It is nothing personal with Kiko I just want the EBU title and he is the man who has it. I would like the British title too and Jason Booth has that it is just a case of which comes first. I have no doubts I am ready for Kiko Martinez. I really hope it is made. If you look at Kiko he is made for me. He is a come forward fighter and I will be able to box. Myself and the team know we are ready and capable of beating Kiko and becoming European Champion,” the Celtic champ added before claiming his disappointment of not registering an awe inspiring display in Cardiff last month was the reason behind McGuigan’s initial Martinez concerns.
“I seemed a bit down after the Turley bout and Barry read into that. We both watched the fight back and on second glance I didn’t do that bad. I was just eager to impress on Sky. I did ok against an awkward opponent i didn’t need to persuade Barry I was ready for Kiko. There were some things I wasn’t happy about but in the end I was good enough to win.”