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Frampton may have fallen at the final hurdle but he is greatest Irish fighter of all time, insists Conlan


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No way through: Herring always held upper hand

No way through: Herring always held upper hand

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No way through: Herring always held upper hand

Manager Jamie Conlan says Carl Frampton's years of success has transformed the Irish boxing landscape.

Conlan, a former Commonwealth champion, admitted he found it hard to watch as the Jackal fell to defeat at the hands of WBO world super-featherweight champion Jamel Herring in Dubai on Saturday night but is adamant that Frampton's legacy will have an impact for years to come.

"The expectations and the way people perceive boxing here has changed because of Carl Frampton. When I turned professional it was accepted that winning a British or a Commonwealth title meant you had enjoyed a good career but now it's about winning a world title and that's all down to Carl who spent such a long time at the top of the sport," said Conlan.

"The popularity of the sport went to a new level, Carl brought in more fans and mainstream television for his fights as well as crossing the community divide. He had so many great nights and had such support that he will be a hard act to follow. Because of what he did and the big fights he had, it made it very hard to watch him against Herring because that wasn't the Carl we are used to, the Carl Frampton that we know."

As for Frampton's place on the list of all-time great Irish fighters, Conlan - whose brother Michael should be fighting for a world title later this year - believes there is no doubt he belongs at the very top.

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"I believe he is the greatest Irish fighter of all time and he will go into the International Hall of Fame. That legacy was already cemented, he was just trying to create even more history by beating Herring before retiring and fell at the last hurdle," added Conlan.

"When you consider the men he has beaten, Nonito Donaire a legend of the sport, Leo Santa Cruz, Scott Quigg, Kiko Martinez, who have all been world champions, it says everything. But time waits for no man and it caught up with Carl against Herring. But Carl has not only set a high benchmark for what he has done in the ring but also outside the ring and you saw that after the fight when they interviewed him first and he said to the MC that he should be interviewing the champion. That's the guy he is, a man of modesty and respect.

"Throughout his career he didn't play up to a certain role, he was just an everyday working class man who had the desire to be great and that resonated with every single person who followed him."


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