Home Boxing News Cruz cruises to potential fight of the year against Frampton

Cruz cruises to potential fight of the year against Frampton

Last night on the undercard of Canelo Alvarez’s 10th round TKO victory over Alfredo Angulo at the MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Leo Santa Cruz successfully defended his WBC super-bantamweight title against mandatory challenger Cristian Mijares, paving the way for what Cruz sees as a potential fight of the year against Belfast’s Carl Frampton.

Frampton battles Mexican Hugo Fidel Cazares next month in a final eliminator bout for Cruz’s strap, and the reigning world champion believes that if ‘The Jackal’ comes through his next fight then the two could meet as early as September, with Cruz further suggesting that he was open to crossing the Atlantic to fight in Ireland.

In speaking with Boxnation, Cruz, a former IBF bantamweight champion, praised Frampton’s fighting style and said that a fight between the two would make for a war in the centre of the ring. Cruz also stated his belief that the fight would not go the distance and added, ‘I think he drops his hands too much – I think that’s one of the mistakes he does. I could catch him…’

Of late Cruz has taken notice of Frampton, and also Frampton’s British rival WBA super-bantamweight champion Scott Quigg, as each have gone from strength to strength in their respective careers.

British boxing fans have long called for a meeting between Quigg and Frampton but thus far negotiations have failed in succeeding to make it happen. Promotional differences, which has seen the two boxers exchange banners, has not helped matters but ultimately the clash would be taken to another level if it was a unification scrap and would likely to be made more easily.

Quigg also fights next month in the sternest test of his career against Nehomar Cermeno who, like Quigg, drew with Cuban slickster Yoandris Salinas, and in 2009 twice beat Mijares.

Should Quigg come through against Cermeno, and Frampton manages to take care of Cazares and Cruz, then next year could finally see be made something special for British fight fans, and indeed fans from all over the world.

That Frampton will get past Cruz, however, is hardly a certainty. ‘The Jackal’ has impressive victories over former IBF super-bantamweight champion Steve Molitor and reigning IBF champion Kiko Martinez, each coming via TKO. Cruz though is undefeated from 28 professional fights and presents a far more demanding challenge than Frampton has ever been faced with.

In the second defence of his 122ibs strap, Cruz battered Mijares over a dominant twelve rounds to win by 120-108 on two scorecards and the other reading 119-109. In the fourth round Cruz began bleeding from his right eye from an accidental head butt but this posed him no problems and he continued to hunt and attack, switching nicely from body to head at will. From the fifth onwards Mijares began to run, doing his best to evade Cruz’s relentlessness, but the champion chased him down and inflicted punishment upon his opponent up until the final bell.

A fight between Frampton and Cruz would indeed be something special for fight fans and one which I sincerely hope takes place by the end of this year.

Ronan Smith
09.03.2014