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Santa Cruz wants Frampton rematch on ‘neutral location’ after NYC favouritism

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Leo Santa Cruz admits that he was hurt by his first career defeat to Carl Frampton last month, and he is determined to come back stronger in the rematch, which he insists must be in a neutral location.

Frampton and his band of followers travelled over 5,000 kilometres for the fight at the Barclays Centre in New York, where their ranks where bolstered by the East Coast Irish-American community.

In the aftermath of the majority-decision win for ‘The Jackal,’ the dethroned WBA featherweight champion Santa Cruz felt that Frampton’s superior support helped sway the judges.

Speaking on ESPN Deportes, Santa Cruz reiterated these gripes when talking about a rematch.

El Terremoto predicted that “I think it is going to happen because he says yes to it and I’m also saying yes. It will be difficult to reach an agreement because in New York there was a lot of favouritism toward him.”

“I think it would be best to find a neutral location for the fight.”

“I think he does want to give me the rematch, hopefully we can do it before Christmas.”

Commenting on his loss, Santa Cruz admitted that “the truth is it hurts, it was very hard to have a loss in my career, but the words of the people have been supporting, it helped me out.”

“I am more eager to come out there for a rematch. Many people tell me that the fight was very good, many tell me that I won, others tell me that it was at least a draw, but everyone has their opinion and we are soon going back to the gym to win the rematch.”

On what he would do differently if they were to do it all again, Santa Cruz noted that “I think we must come forward, be more aggressive.”

“The other time we waited a bit too much to see what Carl Frampton would do, put when I put pressure on him I feel he tired, so I have to go much further with coming forward and apply pressure from the first round and work hard to get him tired and finish him off.”

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