Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Boxing

Carl Frampton v Alejandro Gonzalez: Heat is really on in Texas, but our man can cope

By Ruth Gorman

I'm normally glued to the television to watch the men's final on the Sunday of Wimbledon but I had a good excuse for missing Novak Djokovic's victory over Roger Federer this year as I was on my way to Texas to meet up with Team Jackal and Carl Frampton.

After a 24 hour trip across the Atlantic the first thing that hit UTV camerman Jon Vennard and myself was the heat and humidity when we stepped out of El Paso airport.

Temperatures have been in and around 100 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and in the 80s at night but that hasn't been an issue for Carl, it's actually worked to his advantage.

He's more ahead of schedule than during any other training camp to make the weight at Friday's weigh in as obviously it's easier to sweat out here.

We've spent time with him in the gym over the last couple of days but all the hard work is done. He had his last tough session on Sunday, so instead of doing pad work in the ring, this week he's just doing some skipping, light punching with his coach Shane McGuigan and a bit of running on the treadmill.

With Carl's fight at 3pm local time here (10pm back home), over the last 14 weeks, including while he's been in America, he's been having his punching sessions around that time.

He goes to the gym twice a day here, once in the morning and once in the afternoon.

Away from that he's just relaxing around the hotel.

He has good company in the form of his stablemates Conrad Cummings and new Cyclone Promotions signing Josh Taylor, who are both on Frampton's undercard on Saturday. Coach Shane and manager Barry McGuigan have been out with them since early last week.

The hotel has a lovely pool so the boys have been working on their tans and comparing diving skills when they have a spare hour during the day.

At night time they keep the craic going too, they went to watch the movie Ted 2 at the cinema (which divided opinions), took in a local football (soccer) match and went to a restaurant to watch Irish UFC superstar Conor McGregor win his world title at the weekend.

As always Carl loves being around his family on fight week. His parents and wife Christine flew in last night.

I have met his opponent Alejandro Gonzalez Junior. He is tall and very thin and says he's going to surprise Frampton, but having seen the shape our man is in out here and knowing the damage he can do with one clean punch, my dollar is still on Frampton!

Carl Frampton's title fight on Saturday night will be live on UTV from 9.45pm. Ruth Gorman reports nightly from Texas for UTV Live.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph