Exclusive: Barry McGuigan on Frampton v Santa Cruz III collapse, homecoming and future Selby clash

Joe Hewlett 19/07/2017
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Carl Frampton is currently back in gym with trainer Shane McGuigan ahead of his homecoming fight in Belfast.

The ex-two-weight world champion will take on Andres Gutierrez at the SSE Arena after negotiations broke down with Leo Santa Cruz’s team over a potential trilogy in Northern Ireland.

His promoter, boxing legend Barry McGuigan shared his frustrations and admitted his dissatisfaction in broken promises.

“He told us he would come to Belfast and if he beat Carl in Vegas then he would come over for a trilogy and he didn’t live it up to his word, he let us down. I thought he was a man of his word but he isn’t and that was very frustrating,” McGuigan exclusively told World Boxing News.

“He said he would do something and then he pulled out and changed his mind. I’m disappointed with him because we were honourable with him, fighting twice in America in his home country and we honoured our commitments but he didn’t follow his commitment to us.”

However, the national hero could barely contain his excitement at hosting Frampton’s comeback fight against the Mexican.

“It’s great. We haven’t been there since February 2015 and it’s been a long time. I believe Carl fights better at home than he fights anywhere else. He wanted to come back and there were a few unfortunate scenarios because we had the possibility of getting a deal with Santa Cruz and then we thought there was a possibility of getting the fight with Selby before he had to fight his mandatory.

“But things are looking brighter and we’ve got Andres Gutierrez on July 29 which is a very big fight and is a demanding fight with Carl having to be at his best. This guy will come and take it to Carl so we’re expecting the fans will get a great, great fight.

“He’s only been beaten once albeit a controversial decision against Cristian Mijares who’s been a world champion. He honestly thinks he’s going to win so it’s a dangerous fight.”

If the 30-year-old prevails then it may set up a huge domestic dust-up with Lee Selby. The Welshman successfully defended his title against Jonathon Victor Barros and McGuigan heaped praise towards the IBF king.

“It was fantastic for him to carry on but also the fact he didn’t fight for so long. He needs to get paid too and I’m sure his mother would have wanted him to carry on so he would have known that and the fact that he could block that all out is pretty fantastic. I really admire him.”

The Cyclone’s man was open to the ‘Jackal’s’ next move and concluded:

“The interesting thing is, both of those fights (Santa Cruz and Selby) are options for us and we will have to consider which one we take and see what are the possibilities of both are so we’re keeping our options open.”

Joe Hewlett is lead writer for World Boxing News. Follow Joe on Twitter @Hewlett95