Frampton target Cruz to defend WBC strap against unknown Roman

CARL Frampton target Leo Santa Cruz will defend his WBA super bantamweight title against the relatively unknown Manuel Roman in Las Vegas on September 13.

‘The Jackal’ had been targeting a clash with the Golden Boy fighter, but secured a shot a IBF belt holder and former foe Kiko Martinez- and fights the Spaniard in front 16,000 fight fans on September 6.

Cruz initially expressed an interest in defending against the former Commonwealth and European champ, but revealed his team wanted him to fight Scott Quigg before the Belfast star.

The Quigg fight never materalised and a fighter who recently name dropped Cork managed ‘mr untouchable’ Guillermo Rigondeaux now gives Roman a shot on the Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s rematch with Marcos Maidana on September 13 card at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas,

Santa Cruz (27-0-1, 15 KOs), 26, a former bantamweight titlist, who lives in Los Angeles, will be making the third defense of his 122-pound world title against underwhelming opposition in a fight been built as the co main feature.

“This is my second time fighting on a Floyd Mayweather pay-per-view undercard and I know that there is no bigger stage than this,” Santa Cruz told ESPN. “Manuel Roman is a tough customer. I know he’s going to come prepared and try to take my title. He has nothing to lose and everything to gain, but I plan on leaving the ring with my hand raised.”

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