WBO Junior Lightweight champion Jamel Herring overcomes another bad cut to drop former two-division champion Carl Frampton twice before corner threw in towel in sixth round
DUBAI, U.A.E. (April 3, 2021) — WBO Junior Lightweight titleist Jamel Herring’s defense against Ireland’s former two-division champion Carl Frampton was a long-time coming. Like many bouts the past year, the championship fight’s eventual date and location was affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
As the two camps made it to Dubai, United Arab Emirates earlier this week, a showdown between the combatants seemingly became inevitable. As the bout’s date moved around, the amount of talking grew and the list of topics. One concerning phrase appeared in the same sentence as the names of both fighters: retirement.
My last outing was not my best. People doubted me. They called me every name in the book… Jamel “Semper Fi” Herring, WBO Junior Lightweight champion
Over the course of the fight, the 35-year old Herring (23-2, 11 KOs) demonstrated the 34-year old Frampton (28-3, 16 KOs) was the fighter closer to retirement. The 5-foot 10-inch Herring’s length proved to be insurmountable from the early goings. Frampton had moments of success and added some duress to the situation after opening a cut on the champion’s right eye in Round 4.
He might’ve escalated matters for the former U.S. Marine. Herring dropped the former two-division champion in each of the subsequent rounds – both with single punches. After the action resumed in the sixth round Herring pushed for the knockout. The challenger appeared to be a clean punch, or two away, from being stopped when a white towel sailed into the ring from Frampton’s corner. The referee stopped the bout at 1:40 and immediately two distinctly different realities became apparent, concerning the future of each of the fighters.
“I’m just honored to share the ring with him, Herring said. “He’s a two-division world champion. He’s done great in the sport of boxing, and it was just an honor.
“It was an emotional rollercoaster just to get here. My last outing was not my best. People doubted me. They called me every name in the book, but even with the cut, I wasn’t going to give up. I wasn’t going to quit, and Carl Frampton is a tremendous champion. I’ve been a fan since day one. It’s tough to see any veteran of the sport go out like that.”
Frampton’s two-fight win streak – following a shaky December 2018 outing versus then-IBF Featherweight champion Josh Warrington – came to a disappointing end with his first loss inside the distance.
Frampton said, “I said before the fight I’d retire if I lost, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I want to just to dedicate my life to my family now. Boxing has been good to me. It’s also been bad to me, but the last few years with these boys have been the best years of my career. I just want to go home to my beautiful wife and kids, and that’s it.
“I just got beat by the better man. I really struggled to get inside on him.”
Herring, a 35-year old southpaw who lives and trains in Cincinnati, Ohio started out using his strengths. He kept Frampton at bay with his right jab – sometimes doubled or tripled. He landed his left hand to the shorter fighter’s stomach, as well as a telling punch to the head. Frampton got all the way inside for a brief moment.
Frampton pawed with the jab early in Round 2. The meaningless shots were meant to set-up moves inside, or gauge Herring’s tendencies with his counter punches. Both men stood outside feinting a lot over the second half of the round, looking for safer ways to set up punches with both men in good rhythm.
Herring landed a good scoring punch early in Round 3. Herring scored with a pair of left hands around 1:15. Frampton continued to struggle to solve Herring’s reach advantage and timing. He landed a snapping jab over Herring’s right hand.
Frampton landed a left hook upstairs early in Round 4. Herring responded moments later with a solid uppercut. A cut appeared above Herring’s right eye. The action picked up briefly, by the end of the round blood covered the right cheek of the champion, and both fighters traded some shots to close out the round.
Herring landed first in Round 5. Frampton made his way inside within the first 20 seconds. The action stayed chest-to-shoulder for a while. Frampton went to work. After they were separated and Frampton made his way back, Herring caught the shorter fighter with a straight left that sat him down on his shorts. The two-division champion held himself up with both gloves behind him. Frampton was able to continue, got up and circled away as the action resumed.
Herring dropped Frampton, abruptly, with a left uppercut the subsequent round. Frampton went down looking hurt badly. He managed to get back to his feet again, but he wasn’t right. Frampton took several steps as the referee evaluated him and the fight continued. The champion landed another uppercut, as part of a fierce flurry thrown with the intention of finishing the fight – and possibly the Irishman’s prizefighting career. Frampton buckled from a shot, briefly looked defenseless, but he steadied himself to attempt to weather the storm. Unfortunately for him, the bout came to a halt after his corner threw a white towel into the ring, wrapping the fight up at 1:40.
All images provided by D4G Promotions