Northern Ireland

Carl Frampton won't use 24-hour butler in Las Vegas

Frampton Santa Cruz Image copyright Prresseye
Image caption Belfast's Carl Frampton takes on Leo Santa Cruz in Las Vegas on Saturday night

Belfast boxer Carl Frampton has said he just cannot bring himself to use the services of the butler who has been placed at his disposal in Las Vegas.

The Tiger's Bay man is in the US for this weekend's WBA featherweight world title rematch with Mexican Leo Santa Cruz.

One of the perks at Frampton's hotel is a 24-hour butler service.

However, while you can take the man out of north Belfast, you can't take north Belfast out of the man.

Frampton: I have psychological edge over Santa Cruz

Image copyright Presseye
Image caption The fight is the main event at the MGM Grand

"I haven't used the butler, there's a butler there if I need a butler, but I'm never going to call a butler to do anything," Frampton said.

"When someone says you've got a butler on hand 24/7, it's a bit strange, but I'm all right, I can do my own thing."

Poleglass butlers

The champion joked that his wife Christine, who is from Belfast's Poleglass area, might be more familiar with butler service.

"She'll be all right, coming from Poleglass, I think they have butlers in Poleglass," he said.

"I think she's a bit like me, she'd be afraid to make use of a butler's services."

Frampton, 29, claimed the Mexican's title in a thrilling fight in New York last July.

While anticipation for Saturday night's rematch is reaching fever pitch - with thousands of fans arriving in Vegas from Northern Ireland - Frampton is remaining calm.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Frampton beat Santa Cruz on points in a thrilling fight in New York last July

"We've been here for a month, so we've had a few days to do the touristy stuff- obviously minus the booze. But it's been all right, I've been enjoying myself, relaxing as well," he said.

"I'm relaxed at the minute, I'm not in game mode yet. I'll get more focussed as the fight approaches, after the weigh-in and stuff I'll start to zone in.

"Even on fight day, it's when I'm walking to the arena, that's when I start to get switched on."

Frampton's points victory in July was the first defeat of Santa Cruz's career, with several publications including Ring Magazine and ESPN naming Frampton as the fighter of 2016.

However, Frampton said he's uncomfortable with suggestions that he could become a sporting superstar.

Image copyright Presseye
Image caption The Belfast fighter said he remains relaxed ahead of Saturday night's fight

"It's a big deal, it really is, [but] I don't like words like that, superstar. I think that in terms of being a boxer, I'm very good," he said.

"I think the fan base that we have at the minute, I don't think there's another fighter in the world that has a fan base like this."

While he can't wait to get into the ring, Frampton said there was one thing he is looking forward to even more.

'Can't wait to see the missus'

"I'm excited about getting home, that's the most important thing," he said.

"Obviously I want to win this fight, but my family's the most important thing and I haven't seen the kids in a long time.

"I can't wait to see the missus tonight."

  • There will be live commentary of the fight from the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas on BBC Radio 5 live, plus live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app. The fight is due to get under way at about 04:00 GMT on Sunday.

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