Published Friday, 04 April 2014
Belfast's Carl Frampton knocked out Mexican Hugo Cazáres. (© Presseye)
The fighter from Tiger's Bay felled his Mexican opponent with a massive left hook in the second round of their much-anticipated match at the Odyssey Arena on Friday night.
The win should put Frampton in line for a shot at the World Super-Bantamweight title currently held by Léo Santa Cruz.
The 27-year-old, known as The Jackal, is currently ranked number two overall in the weight division.
Frampton was awarded the victory in front of a roaring home crowd after his 36-year-old opponent appeared to mistime the 10-count.
Cazáres got back to his feet but it was too late and so he misses out on the chance to face his countryman Cruz.
In a poignant touch, Frampton celebrated by putting on a t-shirt in support of Wee Oscar Knox, the brave Co Antrim boy who is battling cancer.
The message is: he hits anyone on the chin – I don’t care who they are – the fight’s over.
Barry McGuigan, manager
Speaking to UTV in his dressing room after the match, Frampton said: "I honestly didn't think it would be over that quick. He's a tough guy - but it shows you the kind of power I have.
"If I hit anyone clean, there's a good chance I'm going to knock them out."
Discussing the left hook that ended Cazáres's dream, the Jackal said it was "a good shot" that "felt good."
"I looked at it back here on the cameras as well and it looked good. I'm very happy and it's always... we don't get paid any overtime in this sport. So it's always good to get rid of them early."
With the venue of his world title fight still to be decided, Frampton admitted that he is still hoping that it could be staged at Ravenhill, the home of Ulster Rugby.
"It hasn't even sunk in - I'm fighting for the WBC world title in my next fight that's amazing. I can't wait.
"If it's not in Belfast, I'm prepared to go on the road and win it and then, I promise the first defence will be back at home."
Proud manager Barry McGuigan described Friday's performance as "spectacular."
"[Carl] is a ruthless finisher, a tremendous puncher, he can box off the back foot and the front foot. And as you can see, he won tonight off the front foot, which is really, really impressive as far as I'm concerned," the ex-world champ continued.
"He can do it - I've told people for years - he really can do it."
Looking ahead to the world title clash, he said there would be lots of hard negotiations over the next weeks or months.
"We hope to get him [Santa Cruz] in the summer - early or late."
Meanwhile on Friday's undercard, Belfast man Jamie Conlan defeated Benjamin Smoes for the vacant WBO European Super Flyweight title.
Eamonn O'Kane defeated Alvaro Gaona for the vacant WBC International Silver Middleweight title.
© UTV News