Boxing: Fight Week Preview
By Gary Kittilsen
After months and months of delays and postponements, it is finally fight week. Carl Frampton and WBO super-featherweight champion Jamel Herring have arrived in Dubai and their long-awaited and highly anticipated world title clash will finally come off this upcoming Saturday.
The fight was originally scheduled for November 2020, those plans were scrapped after Herring suffered injuries to his right eye against Jonathan Oquendo in a September tune-up fight.
The fight was then pushed back to January, but COVID-19 issues got in the way of that date. The two were then scheduled to fight on February 27th in London and that fight was postponed after Frampton injured his hand.
However, we are finally all set to go. Herring will make the third defence of his world title that the US Marine won on Memorial Day against Masayuki Ito. He has defended the title twice, first against Lamont Roach in November 2019 and then against Jonathan Oquendo back in September.
Frampton looks to become a three-division world champion. He previously won the IBF 122-pound world title against Kiko Martinez back in 2014 via unanimous decision. He went on and unified the WBA belt by outpointing Scott Quigg in 2016. The Jackal became a two-division world champion later that year when he outpointed American fan-favorite Leo Santa Cruz for the WBA featherweight world title.
Frampton fell short in his last world title shot losing on points against Josh Warrington in a classic all action war in December 2018. Frampton has run off two wins since dropping the Warrington decision. He outpointed a tougher than expected Tyler McCreary in November of 2019 and then stopped Darren Traynor this past August.
A loaded undercard features the return of future hall of farmer and Filipino legend Donnie Nietes. Nietes is a former four-division world champion. He won his first world title, the 105-pound WBO strap, back in 2007. He went on to capture belts at 108 and 112, and finally captured the WBO strap at 115 pounds back in December of 2018 when Nietes outpointed Kaz Ioka, in Macao.
Nietes has not been in the ring since, a 27-month layoff. He battles Pablo Carillo of Colombia, a rugged veteran of 33 pro fights. Carillo last fought back in August of 2019 when he stopped Luis Golindano in five rounds in his native Colombia. Carillo sports a 25-7-1 record with 16 wins by way of knockout.
Additionally, unbeaten hard-hitting Kazakh junior welterweight prospect Zhankosh Turarov returns. Turarov, who last fought in July 2019, when he stopped Mauro Maximiliano Godoy of Argentina in just three-rounds, takes a massive step up in competition and battles Tyrone McKenna of Belfast.
McKenna sports a record of 21-2-1 with his only two losses coming in close and controversial fashion. McKenna dropped a majority decision to Ohara Davies back in September of 2020. Two years earlier, the Belfast native lost a tight but unanimous decision to Jack Catterall.
The card also features the return of perhaps the brightest young American prospect, Keyshawn Davis of Norfolk, Virginia. Davis made his pro debut In Miami, on the Canelo-Yildrim undercard on February 27th and scored an impressive second-round TKO. Davis returns just five weeks later and takes on Richman Ashelley of Ghana, in a huge step-up fight. Ashelley has a 10-1 record with nine of the 10 wins coming by way of knockout..