CARL Frampton says his September 6 opponent Kiko Martinez is a tougher fighter than Leo Santa Cruz.
‘The Jackal’ had been lining up a battle with WBC super-bantamweight champion Santa Cruz but despite initially showing interest, the Mexican indicated his team preferred a bout with Frampton’s domestic rival Scott Quigg.
Frampton, however has secured a shot at former foe Martinez and his IBF World title and Cruz remains on the horizon. Frampton doesn’t necessarily believe the Spaniard is a tougher prospect than the much vaunted Mexican, but he does believe Martinez is a tougher man.
Indeed, the Cyclone Promotion star of Irish boxing claims the WBC belt holder is ‘puffed up’ by his promoter and isn’t the talent Golden Boy make him out to be.
“Santa Cruz is a good fighter but he’s been puffed up by his promoters,” Frampton said.
“He throws a lot of shots, that’s probably his best asset but he’s very easy to hit and I punch very, very hard. I think he knows that.
“Kiko is a much tougher fight than Leo Santa Cruz. You need to beat these guys to be the best – Kiko’s accepted the challenge and I’m ready to take that belt off him.”