Premier Boxing Champions boss Al Haymon intends to make a third, deciding, bout between Carl Frampton and Leo Santa Cruz happen.
At least that’s according to Frampton’s manager Barry McGuigan, who also notes that he believes there could be “sticking points” in the negotiations.
Frampton lost his undefeated record and his WBA featherweight title last night in Las Vegas against Santa Cruz in an exciting, razor-close encounter which was won by the Mexican-American via majority decision (114:114, 115:113 x2).
With Santa Cruz having levelled the scores, a third fight seems inevitable and Frampton is adamant that it should take place in his home city of Belfast.
Both fighters are advised by the influential Haymon, and McGuigan would reveal to the BBC after the fight that the reclusive boxing figurehead has given the go-ahead for the rubber match
McGuigan revealed that “Al Haymon said there will be another match. I trust him completely.”
“We want a rematch, and they [Team Santa Cruz] gave us their word that they would give us a rematch – so the ball’s in their court. We want an immediate rematch, we don’t want to wait, fight somebody else, then fight them later on – we want to fight them now. Carl wants to fight Santa Cruz right away.”
McGuigan echoed the sentiments of his fighter, stating his strong desire for the rubber match to take place on home soil. The Monaghan man explained that “I hope that it will be achievable to be in Belfast, he [Frampton] doesn’t want to fight anywhere else. He wants to fight in Belfast, he’s been away for some time now so he wants to fight back home. He [Santa Cruz] said he would come to Belfast, we’ve come to America, so it’s only fair and proper that he comes and boxes in Belfast.”
However, McGuigan anticipates problems with the negotiations, with a transatlantic trip for Santa Cruz being the issue. The Clones Cyclone outlined how “I want it to be in Belfast and I hope Leo will be honourable and come to Belfast. I think that might be the sticking point, but let’s wait and see. I hope he’s going to be honourable, but a lot of these guys slip out of these things that they commit to because they don’t want to do it. I’m sincerely hoping that he’s a man of his word.”
Eric Donovan joins Gavan Casey and Joe O’Neill on Episode 2 of the Irish Boxing Show: