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Carl Frampton set for US showdown with Santa Cruz

By Frank Brownlow

Carl Frampton has secured a summer blockbuster fight against Mexican superstar Leo Santa Cruz.

The Ulsterman - who retained his IBF super-bantamweight title and added the WBA strap when defeating Scott Quigg in Manchester a fortnight ago - will face Santa Cruz in a mouthwatering battle in Las Vegas or California in late summer.

American boxing broadcaster Showtime last night claimed agreement has been reached between the two camps and the network have included the fight, which will see Frampton step up to featherweight, in their summer television schedule.

The Belfast boxer may have to give up his two World titles as he will have to bypass mandatory defences against IBF challenger Shingo Wake and the WBA-nominated Guillermo Rigondeaux.

Frampton's promoter, the legendary Barry McGuigan, has always maintained the 29-year-old has no interest in a contest with Rigondeaux who, he claims, has limited box office appeal.

Frampton has long coveted a fight against Santa Cruz and victory would propel the Tigers Bay boxer to global superstar status and a series of multi-million pound contests.

His victory over Quigg was comprehensive and placed him on a higher plane.

This latest development means Frampton's dream to fight at Windsor Park will have to be delayed.

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