frampton-midland-2010Carl Frampton has stated that he is “over the moon” with his world title fight on September 6. Even though the deal was agreed between the fighters themselves a while ago, all parties were still waiting for formal confirmation from the International Boxing Federation (IBF) before announcing the event. Carl whips his frame into prime physical condition before every bout at this level and the Kiko Martinez scrap will prove no different.

“This really will be tough but I push myself hard in training and with a world title on the line I go that extra bit harder. My body is adapting more and I can push the boundaries further in each camp,” he said.

World champions have been thin on the ground in Northern Ireland over recent years. Wayne McCullough returned home from Japan in 1995 with the WBC title. In 2012 Brian Magee was upgraded to full WBA super-middleweight champion prior to his fight with Mikkel Kessler but as that title was not claimed inside the ring it has largely gone unnoticed. So there is now perhaps an expectation from boxing fans in the North that their new hero will emerge victorious.

“It’s what you dream about. I have been boxing since I was seven, so to get the chance to fight and win a world title at home is a dream come true. It’s on the doorstep now so I have to deliver. I want to defend it many times.

“There’s nothing better than fight experience but a lot is about training camps and I had the fight that fell through. We’ve made a world title fight now and if it had of been sooner then great, he’s the champion and he dictates when he wants to fight. He’s been busier and that could stand by him but I’ve been in the gym as well.”

The actual big fight venue has yet to be announced but outdoor locations like the Balmoral Showgrounds and Ravenhill (which now seems unlikely) have been discussed. Frampton’s manager Barry McGuigan won his world title in Loftus Road way back in 1985 and knows all about the atmosphere that a fervent crowd in an outdoor arena can generate. Frampton is relishing the prospect but also pays homage to the unique atmosphere that the Odyssey has created during his rise to the top.

“It can be hard to create an atmosphere like in the Odyssey. The shape of the building and the roof makes it very hostile,” admitted ‘The Jackal’.

“You have to sell more tickets to pay the champion to come to your backyard and it will be a great night.  I think we’ll sell 20,000 tickets. I have to keep focused on the fight but I enjoy the build-up to these big fights. It gives you a bit of a break and changes things up. I’m not a fanatic but I train hard when I have to. I won’t be lying thinking about this guy for the next 13 or so weeks. I’m looking forward to seeing him whenever the venue is announced and we have another press conference.”

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