32Red ambassador Carl Frampton looks ahead to this weekend’s boxing action. British fighter Billy Joe Saunders faces Shefat Isufi – so how will this one turn out? Here’s Carl’s thoughts:
First prediction for the Taylor v Baranchyk fight; first of all, I think it’s an amazing bill to have those guys and Inoue against Rodriguez as kind of a double header, it’s a quality bill. I think both fights are brilliant fights, Taylor obviously the favourite in his fight, but Baranchyk is a beast, that’s how I’d describe him, he’s a little ball of muscle, little ball of aggression.
Taylor no doubt has the more skills, and has a better boxing brain, and I think Taylor will win the fight, I think he may have to come through some sticky patches, it’s a tough fight for him, but Taylor, I’ve seen him with my own eyes sparring and fighting, he is an absolute talent. He’ll have the chance to win a world title in front of his own fans in Scotland, it’s a big opportunity for him. In saying that, it’s a very tough fight, but I still fancy Taylor to come through, I think he’ll win on points after surviving some sticky patches.
Inoue vs Rodriguez is a fight that people have completely written Rodriguez off in, and it’s kind of foolish I think, but it’s also annoyed me a bit cos Rodriguez is a quality fighter, and he hasn’t really got any sort of credit coming into this fight. People are just sort of looking at Inoue as the main man, his nickname’s the Monster, they think he’s going to wipe Rodriguez out.
But Inoue’s coming up the weights, so Rodriguez has the size advantage, he’s a much bigger man than Inoue. Inoue could blow him away early, but if it goes into like three, four rounds, this is a difficult fight, and I think it’s going to be a good fight. I think it’ll be another points win.
On to Billy Joe Saunders v Shefat Isufi. To be honest I don’t know a lot about Isufi. I don’t know about him at all, I’d never heard of him until I heard he was fighting Billy Joe Saunders, so going on that basis, knowing how good Billy-Joe is, and working with Ben Davison who’s obviously a very good trainer, I expect Billy Joe to come through this fight, pretty convincingly.
Maybe that’s me being a bit naive just cos I’ve never heard of this guy, but yeah, Billy Joe will win the fight, I’m pretty sure. Will he stop him? Who knows, because I don’t know enough about the other guy! But yeah, quality weekend of boxing…
Josh Taylor faces Ivan Baranchyk, while Naoya Inoue fights Emmanuel Rodriguez on Saturday night at Glasgow’s SSE Hydro. Billy Joe Saunders fights Shefat Isufi at the Lamex Stadium, Hertfordshire.