The fight had originally been announced by US TV network Showtime for their summer schedule but McGuigan and his team had been relatively quiet on the subject, until now.
— Barry McGuigan (@ClonesCyclone) April 22, 2016
Frampton had already been stripped of the WBA 122 pound belt he won from Scott Quigg in February and now looks set to lose his IBF version too.
Mandatory clashes with Guillermo Rigondeaux and Shingo Wake are set to fall by the wayside as Frampton leaves the super bantamweight division behind without a title to speak of.
The Belfast man has the chance to become a two-weight ruler with victory over WBA ‘super’ champion Santa Cruz when the pair square-off in New York City this coming July.
Santa Cruz has held recognised straps at both 122 and 126 pounds in his career and will be a stern test in what is a huge encounter featuring two undefeated stars of the sport.