Verbal blows for Frampton
Unification fight expected to have added animosity
Despite the verbal spats at press conferences in London, Manchester and Belfast, it will be in the ring on 27 February that super bantamweight champions Carl Frampton (IBF 21-0, 14 KOs) and Scott Quigg (WBA 31-0-2, 23 KOs) will sort out their differences.
Both fighters have been circling each other for a few years. But it's taken until now for their promoters respective promoters, Barry McGuigan and Barry Hearn, to agree terms. Even with the deal done for a unification fight and boxing fans eagerly anticipating an action-packed showdown in Manchester, both camps bristle with barely concealed animosity.
Frampton has been angry since Eddie Hearn pulled a media stunt in April by brandishing a cheque for £1.5 million made out to Frampton to take the fight. Frampton rejected Matchroom's offer, arguing that he drew crowds, not Quigg.
McGuigan held out for a co-promotion. Frampton went to fight in El Paso.
Against an unbeaten Mexican fighter with 27 bouts to his credit, Frampton found himself on the canvas twice in the first round. But he recovered to win convincingly.
"He was up and down like a yo-yo," says Quigg. "I'll beat him convincingly. I'll win by KO."
Frampton dismisses Quigg's record as being "manufactured" and ridicules the manner in which he was handed the WBA belt for nothing when Guillermo Rigondeaux was moved aside. Promising to outbox Quigg, Frampton claims: "He doesn't have a brain, never mind a boxing brain."