Lee Selby coach Chris Sanigar says Carl Frampton rumble will 'definitely happen' this year

Lee Selby would prefer to fight in Cardiff but would travel to Belfast 'if the package was right' says coach Chris Sanigar
Andy Watters

CARL Frampton versus Lee Selby will “definitely happen” this year says Selby’s trainer Chris Sanigar.

Frampton has made it clear that he wants his next fight to be at Windsor Park this summer and respected Bristol-based coach and manager Sanigar told The Irish News yesterday that, while Selby would prefer the fight in Cardiff, he will travel to Belfast “if the package was right”. He predicts that a Frampton-Selby rumble would be British Fight of the Year for 2017.

“I think Lee Selby versus Carl Frampton will definitely happen in 2017,” he said.

“I believe Lee Selby has the tools to win and I think, when we have the fight, there’ll be respect from both boxers and it’ll be a pleasant change not to have any bad-mouthing.

“It will be a fight, a proper fight between two tough, respectful men.

“There won’t be any throwing tables up or swearing. It will be respectful and I would think it will be the Fight of 2017 in British boxing between two top sportsman.

Wales native Selby will appear at the O2 in London on the undercard of the Tony Bellew versus David Haye heavyweight showdown on March 4. His opponent won’t be released until later this week but Sanigar confirmed that the IBF featherweight champion will fight a 10-rounder “to get the ring-rust out”.

“After that he’ll be ready to box Carl Frampton, Leo Santa Cruz or Abner Mares,” he added.

“Those are the three that we’ve been promised. Carl Frampton is our preference and Al Haymon (US promoter) knows that, so Team Frampton and Team Selby have to get together.

“We work very closely with Barry McGuigan and the boys and we have a show in Cardiff on March 11 (Cyclone fighter Conrad Cummings features as chief support) so we’re talking every day and we’ll get March 4 out of the way and then hopefully we can start talking about Frampton versus Selby.

“There is a sticking point about Belfast or Cardiff but I’m sure we can get over it. We would prefer to box in Cardiff and the McGuigans want Windsor Park but we have to work that out and see how the finances can compensate.

“If the package was right Lee Selby would box in Timbuktu.”

Frampton said last year – before his rematch with Leo Santa Cruz had been confirmed – that he wanted to fight Selby at Windsor Park this summer. His points defeat to Santa Cruz in Las Vegas means that the Welshman would be the defending world champion if the ‘battle of Britain’ showdown is made.

“We want to see Lee put on a great performance on March the 4th and then we’ll see about a massive fight,” said Sanigar.

Selby beat Martin Lindsay on the undercard of Frampton's first duel with Kiko Martinez at the Odyssey Arena in 2013. Sanigar has also done business in Belfast previously.

“We’ve got the greatest respect for the McGuigans and also for the Belfast boxing public," he said.

"I put on a couple of shows in Belfast back in the 1990s at The Ulster Hall with Glen and Owen McMahon. We had Eamon McAuley on and a few of the boys and we had a good time in Belfast.”

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