Carl Frampton has become the first Irish boxer to be named Ring Magazine’s Fighter of the Year.
The Belfast world champion fought twice in 2016, easily out-pointing Scott Quigg in Manchester back in February before becoming a two-weight champion defeating Leo Santa Cruz in New York in July.
Frampton moved up a weight to take on the much-fancied Santa Cruz at featherweight and the Tiger’s Bay fighter’s performance in that remarkable duel cemented the decision to award the 29-year-old the prestigious award.
Speaking about winning the award, Frampton told Ring Magazine: “Obviously it’s a huge honour. Towards the end of the year I picked up fighter of the year on some websites but The Ring Magazine, that’s the one. I’ve very, very proud of that.
“I had an amazing year last year. I unified at 122 and moved up and fought a great fighter at featherweight in Leo Santa Cruz. The year went pretty much to plan. It couldn’t have went better.”
Thank you Ring magazine for naming me fighter of the year. This is a very proud moment for me https://t.co/Nw0X2liqwG— Carl Frampton MBE (@RealCFrampton) January 17, 2017
Frampton and Santa Cruz meet once again on 28 January in Las Vegas.