This Saturday (July 29, 2017), Ireland’s Carl Frampton (23-1) returns to his hometown of Belfast to compete for the first time in more than two years as he faces the challenge of Mexico’s Andres Gutierrez (25-1-1). Frampton (aka “The Jackal”) is coming off a grueling pair of fights in the United States against Leo Santa Cruz that saw the Irishman go 1-1.
In July of 2016, Frampton defeated Santa Cruz to take the WBA world featherweight title, giving him a world title in a second weight class, but he lost the belt back to Santa Cruz this year in their January rematch. A third bout between the two is almost a forgone conclusion, but Frampton did want to break up the trilogy, and he also stated that he wanted to return and fight in Ireland. This match with Gutierrez accomplishes both things, but one look at the line makes it appear that Frampton is taking an easy fight.
That may not be the case with Gutierrez, who has operated his entire career in his native Mexico, so this is his first fight in the U.K. This could be a big factor, but at 24 years old, he has a lot of ring-time and experience. He also has 25 knockouts, which cannot be discounted. He has fought as a featherweight for more than six years now, and he will walk into the fight with advantages in height and reach over his opponent here despite fighting in enemy territory.
Frampton is now 30 years old, and he has some big fights ahead of him. He has proven to be an elite technician, and he has been looking forward to fighting at home again. Though that can work against some fighters, Frampton has been very focused operator and expects to win this Saturday. Though there is risk in every fight, this is a measured risk, as Gutierrez is facing a far better boxer in his hometown for the Mexican’s first trip abroad to fight. The over/under is set at 8.5, and if the KO does not come for either man early, you can expect the fight to go the distance. And who do you think will have the edge with the judges in Belfast?
Blaine McGuigan and his Cyclone Promotions have a seven-fight boxing card in store overall, and a second 12-round fight is also getting attention at Several Bookmakers. WBO European middleweight champion Conrad Cummings (11-1-1) will be making the first defense of the title he won this past March as he faces Poland’s Robert Swierzbinski (18-6-2). Swierzbinski has fights with Chris Eubank Jr., David Lemieux and Tommy Langford on his resume, so Cummings will be facing his most battle-tested opposition to date.
SSE Arena – Belfast, Northern Ireland
Featherweight – 12 rounds
Andres Gutierrez +1500 o8½ -325
Carl Frampton -3000 u8½ +250
Middleweight – 12 rounds
Robert Swierzbinski +1000
Conrad Cummings -2000
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