It’s been one hell of a ride for Carl Frampton. He was already a two-weight world champion, the first Northern Irishman to achieve the feat, and now the Belfast-born fighter is on the verge of boxing immortality and an almost guaranteed position in the boxing Hall of Fame.
There’s no question that Frampton is one of the most beloved champions to British and Irish fight fans in recent memory, probably since Barry McGuigan’s heyday in the eighties. Down to earth and genuinely amiable, Frampton has lit up boxing arenas for more than a decade now and at 33 he doesn’t look like slowing down anytime soon. On 27 February, ‘The Jackal’ takes on former US Marine Jamel Herring with the intention of adding the American’s WBO super-featherweight strap to the super-bantamweight and featherweight titles he won in 2014 and 2016 respectively.
Frampton has achieved more than most prizefighters could ever dream of in the ring - aside from being a champion in multiple divisions, he’s also held European and Commonwealth titles, and has won Fighter of the Year gongs from The Ring, ESPN and the Boxing Writers’ Association of America - and while he may not be ready to hang up his gloves just yet in 2021, he’s still highly ranked and a major contender after all, one suspects that we’re about to embark on the twilight of his career.
While Frampton’s prowess may not be as sharp as it was, say in 2016, when he outmatched the very talented Leo Santa Cruz, with another shot at a place in the history books on the line, you better believe Frampton is going to turn up to London next month chomping at the bit to beat Herring.
On 12 February, the Chinese New Year will usher in the ‘Year of the Ox’, but if he’s victorious over Herring a little over a fortnight later, Frampton will secure his legacy as one of the best fighters to hail from the United Kingdom or Ireland, not only in recent memory, but ever. Say goodbye to the ox, instead strap yourself in and say hello to the ‘Year of the Jackal’.