Belfast Telegraph

IFA now eyes other big events after boxing proves a knockout

Carl Frampton celebrates victory at Windsor Park as he stopped Luke Jackson in the ninth round.
Carl Frampton celebrates victory at Windsor Park as he stopped Luke Jackson in the ninth round.
Carl Frampton will take on Josh Warrington for his IBF World Featherweight title later this year.
Carl Frampton will take on Josh Warrington for his IBF World Featherweight title later this year.
Carl Frampton up against Luke Jackson at Windsor Park.
Carl Frampton up against Luke Jackson at Windsor Park.
Carl Frampton up against Luke Jackson.
Carl Frampton enters the ring. He takes on Luke Jackson at The National Football Stadium at Windsor Park, Belfast. Picture Colm Lenaghan/ Pacemaker
Tyson Fury, Carl Frampton and Paddy Barnes will all take to the ring at Windsor Park.
Tyson Fury with Francesco Pianeta during Saturday night's Heavyweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Tyson Fury during Saturday night's Heavyweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Tyson Fury with Francesco Pianeta during Saturday night's Heavyweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Paddy Barnes lost out to Cristofer Rosales in their WBC Flyweight Title fight.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Conrad Cummings after defeating Nicky Jenman during Saturday nights Middleweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Conrad Cummings after defeating Nicky Jenman during Saturday nights Middleweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Conrad Cummings with Nicky Jenman during Saturday nights Middleweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Luke Keeler defeats Dwayne Grant during Saturday nights Middleweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Luke Keeler defeats Dwayne Grant during Saturday nights Middleweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Luke Keeler with Dwayne Grant during Saturday nights Middleweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Steven Ward defeats Steve Collins Jr during Saturday nights Light Heavyweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 18th August 2018 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho Steven Ward with Steve Collins Jr during Saturday nights Light Heavyweight contest at Windsor Park, Belfast. Photo by William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Pacemaker Press 17/08/2018 Preparations underway to prepare the Ring for Carl Frampton's Fight at Windsor Park in Belfast. Carl Frampton tops the bill as he takes on Luke Jackson at Windsor Park on Saturday night, with Tyson Fury fighting two-time world title challenger Francesco Pianeta. Paddy Barnes challenges WBC World Flyweight champion Cristofer Rosales for his world championship. Picture Colm Lenaghan/ Pacemaker

By David Young

The Carl Frampton vs Luke Jackson fight night has been hailed as "a fantastic success" for the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park - and for Belfast as a whole.

Saturday's presentation was the first major non-football event at the Irish Football Association's home, which received a major upgrade assisted by a £40m injection of public funds.

Many fans praised the smooth running of the event, which showcased not only the Jackal's prowess to the world, but the venue itself.

The 23,000-strong crowd sang along between bouts to the likes of Sweet Caroline, and cheered as famous faces flashed up on giant screens placed around the ground.

Fans mingled with celebs such as TV star James Nesbitt, football legend Paul Gascoigne and Ballyclare world superbike champ Jonathan Rea at the packed ground, which is home to Linfield FC and the Northern Ireland international team.

The bill also saw heavyweight Tyson Fury continue his comeback by defeating Italian Francesco Pianeta on points. The IFA said it was delighted to have been able to help home town hero Frampton realise his dream of fighting in front of his local fans at the stadium.

"There was a 23,000 capacity crowd and the fight was beamed live to more than 30 countries - it was one of the weekend's biggest sporting events anywhere in the world," the IFA said.

Worldwide visibility for the fight - and the stadium - will help keep Belfast in the running for major sporting events, it claimed.

With the SSE Arena, Kingspan Stadium, and now Windsor Park, things are looking good for the reputation of the city as a major events host.

At the same time, the IFA said it was very conscious that the ground was located in a residential area.

"It's important to us to ensure that the local residents benefit from the presence of this world-class stadium right on their doorstep," it added.

"We're looking to host future events that will be good for Belfast and for the local community."

Belfast Telegraph

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