Carl Frampton admits time is right for all-British fight with IBF world champion Lee Selby
By Tim Hobbs
Last Updated: 24/07/17 12:00pm
Carl Frampton admits the timing seems to be right for him to finally face IBF featherweight champion Lee Selby.
'The Jackyl' takes on Andres Gutierrez in his Belfast homecoming this weekend, six months after losing the WBA Super world title.
IBF champion Selby (25-1-KO9) won his mandatory defence against Jonathan Victor Barros on July 15 - days after his mother passed away - and has been hunting a showdown with the Belfast star for the last year.
Frampton (23-1-KO14) was ringside to watch Selby's success and admits that once he gets past Gutierrez, an all-British fight between him and the 'Welsh Mayweather' could come to fruition.
"I'm not looking past Gutierrez in any shape or form but it's natural for people to look at the two of us and want to see the fight happen - in the same way that they wanted to see me fight Scott Quigg at super-bantamweight," Frampton said in his Sunday Life column.
"Selby did the business when he retained his IBF world featherweight title and all credit to him for doing it just a few days after his mother had passed away.
Selby ready to kick on
IBF featherweight champion ready to build momentum after emotional title defence.
"I don't think I could have gone in and fought but he did and beat his mandatory challenger Jonathan Barros and afterwards he was talking again about a fight with me and that's one that I would be up for. The timing would seem to be right for the fight.
"Fans want to see who's the best in Britain and it's a natural fight.
"Selby isn't the only option I would have in terms of a world title shot but the all-British battles do create a lot of interest. Selby is a boxer who I've always respected and I know how hard it would be.
"All being well this Saturday, I expect to be fighting again before the end of the year so I can finally enjoy Christmas for the first time in years and a world title fight with Selby would be perfect."
"The Selby fight would be great but I just have to focus on Gutierrez. He's a young, hungry fighter who knows he has the chance to smash his way into the world title picture. He's relentless and I have to be on my game - and I will be."
Selby wants to fight again in November and is happy to take a unification battle with Gary Russell Jr (WBC) or Oscar Valdez (WBO), with WBA holder Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares likely to fight in October.
Scott Quigg, Frampton's former foe, could also come into the equation as he is ranked ahead of the Northern Irishman after two wins at 126lbs.