Carl Frampton vs Jamel Herring: what is on the line, how to watch – and what is our prediction?

Carl Frampton bids to become the first Irish fighter to win world titles in three weight divisions when he takes on WBO super-featherweight champion Jamel Herring in Dubai on Saturday.

But while it could be an historic night for Frampton, it could also be his last – the Northern Irishman has said he “will retire” if he fails to defeat Herring, who is known as the ‘Fighting Marine’ after completing two tours of duty in Iraq with the US Marines.

When is Frampton vs Herring?

The fight takes place in Dubai on Saturday, April 3 – with the main event at some point after 10pm. The bout was originally scheduled for Feb 27 but had to be rescheduled after Frampton sustained a hand injury. 

What are the fighters saying?

Carl Frampton

Frampton, who will have hundreds of supporters’ messages printed on his shorts on fight night, said: “For me to win this fight, I will need to be perfect. If I carry out my game-plan, I believe I will win this fight.

“I’m very proud of what I have done in my career so far. But the chance to go down as the only ever three-weight world champion in the whole island of Ireland, and only the fourth in Britain, will put me in an elite bunch of fighters across the world, and it would make me very proud to do it.”

Frampton’s trainer Jamie Moore, who has worked with the likes of Tyson Fury, Amir Khan and Martin Murray, said: “Ever since this match-up was made, I liked it for Carl. I think he has all the attributes and style to make history. He is right up there with the most talented fighters I have ever worked with.”

Jamel Herring

WBO champion Herring views Frampton as his toughest test – but he has a five-inch height and reach advantage.

He said: “Of course you always want to use your physical attributes in any fight. But I will always give Carl respect. He probably beats me in the experience department. He’s been in those big fights. 2016 was a big year for him. Scott Quigg, Leo Santa Cruz, but it’s been a while since those days. And he was at the lower weight classes as well.

“My mindset as a fighter is to prepare for the best possible Carl Frampton. I know the photos and videos are out there, but I have to train as if Carl is actually the world champion. He’s a two-division world champion and I give him that honour and respect. But I just feel like for me, overall, I’m in the best shape of my life. This is a huge fight for my legacy.

“It’s his last opportunity and he wants to make history. Of course you’ve got to expect the best performance he could possibly put up. But at the same time I have a lot of goals and dreams that I still want to accomplish. We’ll have to see what it comes down to but I’m definitely prepared for whatever he throws at me.”

What TV channel is it on?

The fight will be shown free-to-air on Channel 5, with coverage starting at 10pm.

Who is on the undercard?

  • Zhankosh Turarov vs Tyrone McKenna (WBO Inter-Continental super-lightweight title)
  • Donnie Nietes vs Pablo Carrillo (vacant WBO International super-flyweight title)
  • Tursynbay Kulakhmet vs Heber Rondon (WBC International super-welterweight title)
  • Faizan Anwar vs Evgenii Vazem (welterweight)
  • Keyshawn Davis vs Richman Ashelley (lightweight)
  • Fahad Al Bloushi vs Suraj (super-featherweight)

What is our prediction?

Gareth A Davies: Frampton has certainly operated overall in his career against a higher class of opponent than Herring has in his – witness Leo Santa Cruz, Scott Quigg, Nonito Donaire, Kiko Martinez, to name some of the top boxers he has beaten – but at age 34, and in a heavier weight bracket than ever before, Frampton must be on point in this fight.

Timing his punches and moving in and out cleverly will be the key. Frampton will have to employ deft footwork to get on the inside to let his punches go against the southpaw, who works brilliantly behind his jab. If Frampton can establish a rhythm early in the fight, and draw the American into a dog fight, he can make it his night. It is a tough call, but Frampton will put it all on the line, and can eke out a close decision if he is at his very best.

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