The boxing scene in Great Britain is in a new golden age and on February 27, Manchester will play host to a true mega fight between two exciting domestic talents. Although it has been garnering minimum attention in the United States, I’d argue that the upcoming clash between Carl Frampton and Scott Quigg will be the biggest prizefight of 2016 to date. These are two undefeated champions, facing off in a unification bout. At 27 and 28, they are both in their primes.
Carl Frampton is the IBF champion at 122 pounds. He had a nice amateur career, before turning professional in his early 20s. He’s been on a fast-track for stardom ever since. Known as “The Jackal,” he’s a compact, explosive combination puncher. Coming into this fight with Quigg, he’s 21-0 with 14 KOs. Notable wins include a sizzling stoppage of Chris Avalos a year ago in Frampton’s native Belfast. He has two wins over Kiko Martinez, including one by TKO.
However, in Frampton’s last fight, a July defense against Alejandro Gonzalez, Frampton started slow and got dropped twice in Round 1. Still, he climbed off the canvas and out of the hole to win a decision by wide margins.
WBA champion Scott Quigg is a taller, longer fighter. He had a much more abbreviated amateur career than Frampton’s, but has enjoyed similar success in the professional ranks. His record to date is 31-0-2, with 23 KOs. While his record is slightly more blemished than Frampton’s, he’s actually the longer reigning champion. He’s held his belt over two years now, and defended it four times. His last win was the biggest of his career, a Round 2 stoppage of former champion Martinez last July.
Boxing needs a lot more of these champion vs. champion, unification bouts. The alphabet-soup chaos of multiple championship claims confuses and frustrates casual fans trying to get more involved in following the sport. Frampton and Quigg should be applauded for leading the way.