The Jackal returns to the ring for first time since defeat to Leo Santa Cruz in Las Vegas in January
Carl Frampton is to fight Mexico’s Andres Gutierrez when he returns from his first professional defeat at Belfast’s Odyssey Arena on July 29.
The 30-year-old lost his WBA featherweight title to Leo Santa Cruz in their rematch in January, and despite a desire to fight the Mexican for a third time or challenge Wales’ Lee Selby, instead meets the little-known Gutierrez.
Next month’s match-up represents Frampton’s first in his hometown since he defeated Chris Avalos at the same arena in February 2015, and is expected to lead to a further fight later this year against another of the featherweight division’s biggest names.
Gutierrez, 23, has lost only one of his 37 fights, drawing another, but is yet to compete at world level. He has also only twice fought outside of Mexico, on each occasion doing so in the US.
IN OTHER NEWS: Leamington’s Navi Mankoo can’t wait to make his professional boxing debut next month. Mankoo won the Midlands title on two occasions in the Novice ABA’s and reached the national semi final. Now, after competing in the Elite ABA’s and the Haringey Cup, Mankoo is raring to go in the paid ranks.
“I am excited about my first contest,” he told bcb-promotions.com. “I am looking forward to going in the ring healthy and well hydrated. I made a few errors in the amateurs after losing too much weight through water loss and not dieting right and I am looking forward to putting things right.
“Becoming a professional athlete is something I have always wanted to do as I train each day whether it is doing weights or running and I have been this way since I started boxing at 11.”
Mankoo trains in Leamington Spa with trainer Edwin Cleary at Cleary’s Gym, emulating the world famous Ingle Gym in Sheffield after Cleary trained there for a few years alongside the likes of Naseem Hamed , Johnny Nelson and Ryan Rhodes.
Mankoo believes that will stand him in good stead as he begins on his professional path.
“I like to train most days and feel I am always more or less at a good fitness level,” he added. “Work within the boxing gym has picked up now and is going great, the lads work well together and I am looking forward to starting a new diet and hydration plan.
“I strongly believe my switch hitting style and power will cause my opponent big difficulties as I box southpaw and orthodox and throw punches from different angles. I’m feeling really good and excited to begin my journey.”
Mankoo fights at Chesford Grange Hotel on Friday, 21st July alongside a trio of fellow local fighters.