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Tyson Fury's title win was biggest achievement, says Carl Frampton

By Joanne Sweeney

Andy Murray may have claimed the BBC Sports Personality of the Year crown - but for Carl Frampton, controversial fighter Tyson Fury would have had his vote for his performance in the ring.

The IBF super bantamweight champion yesterday spoke of his respect for the new unified heavyweight champion of the world.

The 28-year-old - who will take on Scott Quigg in a unification title fight in Manchester on February 27 - praised the Dunblane-born tennis player for his stunning performance in the Davis Cup for GB.

But the pride of Tigers Bay in north Belfast has high regard for his fellow boxer's achievement in the ring when he beat Wladimir Klitschko last month to claim the heavyweight title.

Carl told the Belfast Telegraph: "It was hard to look past Andy Murray. No disrespect to the other lads on the Davis Cup team but he pretty much won it on his own.

"But in terms of sporting achievements, and I'm not going to talk about things he has said, it was hard to look past Tyson Fury as well.

"He defeated one of the longest ever reigning heavyweight champions in Wladimir Klitschko, when no one ever expected him to do it, including myself.

"He went out to Germany and became the unified heavyweight champion of the world. At one point, the heavyweight title was seen as the greatest title in sport."

Carl would not be drawn on the boxer's controversial comments on gay people and women - which he apologised for at the event - but agreed that if they had not been made, the award may have gone to Fury.

"Other boxers in the past have won it, such as Joe Calzaghe and Barry McGuigan but obviously as some of the stuff he (Fury) has said has been so controversial, some people either like it or don't. But in terms of sporting achievement, Fury's was right up there."

Carl presented gymnast Ellie Downie with her Young Personality of the Year award, and acknowledged that winning the Sports Personality of the Year award himself is something he would welcome in the future.

He was one of a number of top sportspeople from Northern Ireland not included in the BBC shortlist of 12.

"As a sportsman, yes obviously I would have liked to but there's more to do yet. I had a decent year last year but if I can get a run going next year, then I might get my name onto the shortlist," he said.

While his training camp for the big fight against Scott Quigg is going well, he revealed he's not going to deprive himself of his Christmas dinner.

Belfast Telegraph


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