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Frampton outpoints Donaire in battle of former champions

/ 09:34 AM April 22, 2018

Carl Frampton delighted his Belfast home crowd with a unanimous points win over fellow former multiple world champion Nonito Donaire.

All that was at stake was the World Boxing Organization’s interim featherweight belt, not a fully-fledged title.

But by coming out on top by a margin of 117-111 on all three judges’ scorecards, the 31-year-old Frampton kept himself on course for a bout with the winner of next month’s International Boxing Federation title fight between Lee Selby and Josh Warrington.

WBO champion Oscar Valdez could also lie in wait for the 31-year-old Frampton, a former world title holder at both super-bantamweight and featherweight.

Prior to Saturday’s bout — which just carried on past midnight local time (2300 GMT) — Northern Ireland’s Frampton had rated Donaire, a seven-time world champion across four separate weight classes, as the most “accomplished fighter I have ever faced”.

But the 35-year-old Filipino did not appear to be at his very best in Belfast, although he did rock Frampton with several solid punches in the 11th round of 12.

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“Nonito Donaire was dangerous from start to finish. I stuck to the game plan and at times my boxing was beautiful,” Frampton told BT Sport as he looked forward to having a world-title shot at Belfast’s Windsor Park — best known as the home ground of Northern Ireland’s football team.

“There is only one thing on my mind at the moment — a world title fight at Windsor Park and I can’t wait to get there.”

Frampton, who split from promoter Barry McGuigan last year, before ditching Shane McGuigan, Barry’s son, as his trainer, added: “In the 11th round I was definitely hurt but I survived it and that’s what champions do.

“My trainer Jamie Moore deserves a lot of credit, the game plan was perfect. When it got close I needed to use my straighten which I did. I wasn’t in the middle range too much and when I was, I got caught.

“But Donaire is a world class fighter and a world class gentleman.

“There is not a man on this planet at featherweight who is going to beat me at Windsor Park.”

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TAGS: Boxing, Carl Frampton, Nonito Donaire, WBO featherweight
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