Monday 21 January 2019

Frampton bout upgraded to interim title fight

Carl Frampton. Photo: Sportsfile
Carl Frampton. Photo: Sportsfile

Bernard O'Neill

Oscar Valdez's broken jaw has seen the Carl Frampton versus Nonito Donaire fight elevated from a non-title bout to a showdown for the interim WBO featherweight belt.

Both men are scheduled to meet at the SSE Arena in Belfast next month and the winner will face unbeaten Valdez whose jaw was broken by Scott Quigg in the USA earlier this month.

The blow occurred in the fifth round, but despite his coach being unable to remove his gumshield because the injury was so bad, the Mexican warlord fought on, as did Quigg whose nose was broken in the same round, and won.

"I was sure that the winner of this fight was going to go on to fight for a world title in their next fight and having an interim world title on the line on April 21 all but confirms that, said Frampton.

"Oscar Valdez must face the interim champion when he is ready and that's a big incentive for myself and Donaire," added the former Irish Elite international.

Elsewhere, Anthony Joshua has told Deontay Wilder to "stop living the fantasy" and accept who would be the bigger draw in any potential title unification fight.

A clash between Joshua, Britain's IBF and WBA heavyweight champion, and WBC belt-holder Wilder for the undisputed world title would be one of the biggest in world boxing.

Joshua first has to get past WBO champion Joseph Parker in Cardiff a week on Saturday but there is little doubt which fight is being eyed next.

Joshua hopes Wilder recognises that he is a greater attraction in the UK than the American is in the US.

Joshua said: "If he was serious about the fight, we'd do serious negotiation.

"If not, (he should) stop hooting and hollering because we'll just freeze him out."

Irish Independent

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