Carl Froch believes Carl Frampton is a World champion in waiting – and has backed the super bantamweight star to wow the Froch Army on Saturday night in the Capital FM Arena, live on Sky Sports HD1 and in 3D.
Frampton fights for the vacant IBF Inter-Continental title against fellow unbeaten young gun Raul Hirales from Mexico as the chief support to Froch’s IBF World super middleweight title challenge to Lucian Bute, and The Cobra believes Frampton can be a big hit with the fans.
“In a way it’s a shame my fight is right after Frampton’s as I love watching that kid fight,” said Froch. “He’s got bags of skill, is as tough and an Ox and he can really bang. I’ve seen him at close quarters a few times now and everyone he’s faced has just not been able to live with him. I know Barry McGuigan (Frampton’s manager) rates him very highly and he knows a thing or two about boxing.
“Obviously it’s a huge night in my career but Frampton is the future and even though he’s a Belfast lad, I think my fans will love the way he boxes and I hope they get behind him when he fights because they can say they were there early in his career when he goes all the way to the top – which I really believe he will.”
Frampton is 13-0 with nine wins inside the distance and the Commonwealth champion looks set to fight for major honours later in the year. The 25 year old is on a collision course with European champ Kiko Martinez and he believes a win in his toughest test to date on Saturday will seal the deal.
“A good win here and it could lead to a good ranking in the IBF and then you can start plotting a route to the World title,” said Frampton. “There are guys out there on the World stage that I am not yet ready for, but there’s not many in that category, only a handful. I believe I’m the best in Britain and in Europe and I want to get the chance to prove that.
“It means a lot that Carl rates me – I’m a huge fan of his and there is so much to admire about him, both the way he boxes and his approach to the sport in general. He only fights the best and his record reads like a who’s who of the best boxers in the World. That must be the blueprint for all fighters and it’s certainly the route I want to take.
“I know Carl’s fans really got behind Kell Brook when he was the chief support for his Super Six Final in Atlantic City and I hope that they like the look of me and give me a great reception. I can assure them I will pay them back in the ring.
“Hirales comes to fight and he meets you head on which is what I want to face, someone to come and fight me – I don’t feel like anyone has actually done that so far and it’s frustrating because I haven’t been able to show my best.”
Extremely limited tickets for Froch’s IBF World super middleweight title challenge to Bute with Frampton vs. Hirales as chief support are on sale now priced £60, £100 and £150 from the Capital FM Arena Nottingham website and on 08444 124624. £40, £80, £200 and £300 tickets are now all sold-out.
Images courtesy of Lawrence Lustig.