Belfast Telegraph

Carl Frampton: Christine got me through dark days after title defeat

By Ali Gordon

Belfast boxer Carl Frampton has opened up about the love and support he has received from his wife Christine.

Ahead of his big fight in Belfast on Saturday, he spoke about how Christine has been a rock throughout his boxing career. Carl was progressing through the ranks as an amateur and the pair lived off Christine’s student loan while she studied criminology with criminal justice at Queen’s University.

“I guess I’ve never given her enough credit for the support she has been to me right back from amateur days until now,” Carl writes in his exclusive Sunday Life Sport column today.

In January Carl (30) lost his world featherweight title to Leo Santa Cruz at the MGM in Las Vegas. This Saturday he will take on Andres Gutierrez in a WBC world featherweight title eliminator at Belfast’s SSE Arena.

The fight will be his first competitive bout since that agonising defeat.

After losing to Santa Cruz I felt pretty low, I felt like a failure

“Losing my world featherweight title to Leo Santa Cruz hit me hard, harder than most could understand, and I have to give enormous credit to my wife Christine for getting me through some tough, dark days,” says the sports star from Tigers Bay in north Belfast.

“After losing to Santa Cruz I felt pretty low, I felt like a failure because I just thought I’d let down all those fans who had travelled to watch me and all the people of Northern Ireland whose support continues to be very humbling.

“I got really upset I hadn’t performed the way I wanted and it was melting my head a bit.” Both his fans and family stood by The Jackal through the dark days that followed his first professional loss.

“I felt I was taking it out on Christine a bit and that was wrong, it was just the way I was feeling — it wasn’t me and she knew it,” writes the father-of-two.

 I was taking it out on Christine a bit and that was wrong

“Christine got me through that, she got me to pick my head up and helped me to get my head straight and realise that I had lost to a great champion, I hadn’t been at my best, but it wasn’t the end.

“And I must, genuinely, say that the support of the fans was amazing and they helped me get over the first loss of my professional career as well.”

Carl trains out of McGuigans Gym in Battersea, south west London, under the watchful eye of coach Shane McGuigan. His gruelling fitness regime means spending lengthy spells away from Christine and their kids Carla (6) and two-year-old Rossa. “Boxers are complex characters, especially after a loss, and instead of just two children I’m sure that Christine feels at times she has three children in the house,” adds Carl in his most candid column yet.

Last year the Framptons moved from their plush house in Banbridge to their former, much more modest, Lisburn home while waiting for their new home to be built.

A self-confessed “clean freak”, Christine admits she would find it hard to let Carl take over the household duties when he hangs up the gloves. However, she is planning on putting her university degree to good use and going back to work.

In an interview with Sunday Life earlier this year, Christine revealed that she always wanted to be a prison officer, but it appears an unlikely career path now, given Carl’s profile.

Belfast Telegraph Digital


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