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Rematch hopes fade for Frampton as Santa Cruz reveals preferred next fight

Leo Santa Cruz [32(18)-1(0)-1] looks set to break the promises he made Carl Frampton both before and after the second installment of their thrilling dance-off.

The Mexican-American pledged beforehand that he would give ‘The Jackal’ a rematch in Belfast should he prevail in their fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in January. Santa Cruz did indeed win in Sin City and, while his openness to travel to Belfast seemed diminished, the possibility of a repeat still looked strong, with ‘El Terremoto’ expressing his desire for a trilogy.

The three-weight champ, who admittedly seems to shy away from the decision-making process regarding his own fights, then last month distanced himself from a Belfast trip and looked likely to take a rematch with Abner Mares.

However, it now seems another potential Frampton foe is number one on Santa Cruz’s wishlist. The WBA champ wants a unification clash with IBF champion Lee Selby, who has been especially Frampton-keen of late, before he even considers a return with the Belfast great.

Speaking to IFL TV, Santa Cruz explained that “I am up for anything. I am here and I want to fight the best. There is Lee Selby I want to unify against him, there is Gary Russell, Oscar Valdez, a rematch with Mares, the third fight with Carl Frampton, any of those I am willing to fight.

“Most likely, I would like to unify and Lee Selby is calling me out so hopefully we can make it with him, get the win and then we can make either Frampton or Mares because I want to give both of those guys a rematch.”

Watch Leo Santa Cruz’s interview with IFL TV in full below:


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