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Carl Frampton out to set up World title clash with Valdez at Windsor Park

Carl Frampton and Nonito Donaire
Carl Frampton and Nonito Donaire
David Kelly

By David Kelly

Carl Frampton believes WBO World featherweight champion Oscar Valdez can be lured to Belfast for a blockbuster showdown this summer.

The Jackal insists he is totally focused on the considerable challenge of four-weight world champion Nonito Donaire this Saturday night but, nevertheless, knows that victory will lead to a world title shot with Windsor Park the expected venue.

Frampton’s world title options will open up should he defeat Donaire, with the winner of the clash between Lee Selby and Josh Warrington next month also a possibility for the Belfast superstar.

“If I had to choose I would love the Valdez fight. Globally, it’s the bigger fight and I think that could happen in Belfast,” said Frampton.

“If you look at the audience that watched him against Scott Quigg in his last fight, Valdez knows he would make more money fighting me in Belfast than in the States.”

Frampton continued: “It makes financial sense for the fight to happen here. I know because he is the champion it will be difficult to get him away from the States but I think he is a brave guy and would come.

“But all the talk about world title fights and Windsor Park doesn’t mean anything unless I beat Donaire so not one bit am I looking past him because I know how good a fighter he is.”

The 31-year-old former world champion has meticulously prepared for his duel with Donaire, though admits that he has not had to do too much homework on his legendary rival.

“Potentially I could have fought for a world title without fighting Donaire but beating someone like him will help me take another world title,” said the Jackal. “People are asking me, ‘Am I studying him a lot? Am I watching a lot of his fights?’

“To be honest I’m not, because I grew up watching him. I grew up being a fan of his. I know how he fights; I know what he does.

“I’ve believed from the start that I would beat him, when Donaire was mentioned as a possible opponent for me.

“We’ve talked about fighting each other for a long time, even at super-bantamweight, but nothing really came of it.

“Now it’s happening and I can’t wait because I feel in great shape.”

Meanwhile, Saturday night’s bill suffered a blow when Jono Carroll had to withdraw from his highly-anticipated super-featherweight clash with Belfast man Marc McCullough.

Popular McCullough is now expected to have a six-rounder with the fight to be held at a later date.

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