macklin (1)Former European middleweight champion and world title challenger Matthew Macklin has endorsed Carl Frampton’s campaign to win the IBF super-bantamweight belt in September. Macklin is spearheading Matchroom’s plans to bring big time boxing to Dublin on August 30 and has half an eye on a money-spinning showdown with Irish rival Andy Lee later this year. Speaking at the Holiday Inn last month the 32-year-old revealed that he fancies Carl Frampton’s chances of landing a global strap at the Titanic Quarter.

“I think Frampton’s a great fighter. I wasn’t sure or 100 per cent on him but against Martinez [in the first fight], Kiko really put it on him early doors but he tucked up behind a nice defence and picked his punches well,” said Matthew.

“When it was time to step it up he did and produced a beautiful knockout finish so he even had the power late on in the fight. Martinez has obviously gone on since then to win a world title but I think that on September 6 Frampton will do the same and win the title.

“He beat him before and I don’t see anything that Martinez can do differently. If anything, Carl has improved more and can beat him even more decisively. Only Martinez knows how he prepared for the first fight but he really put a lot of pressure on Frampton and Frampton showed experience beyond his years and his class to finish brilliantly.”

Macklin is eager to pull on the gloves again after a proposed May 24 date against Daniel Geale, on HBO’s influential Boxing after Dark programme, fell through. The card was pulled when one half of the headline bout, Cork-based Cuban Mike Perez, withdrew injured and his American opponent Bryant Jennings was left in limbo. The middleweights subsequently went their separate ways and Geale signed to fight former Macklin conqueror Gennady Golovkin. Putting that Stetside disappointment aside, the Tipperary boxer is now heading back to the Emerald Isle as he hunts down another big opportunity.

“Doing these fights in Ireland is important for me. There are great boxers over here in the professional scene and with Frampton headlining up in Belfast and me headlining down in Dublin it can trickle down and keep everyone happy,” he said.

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