'Over the hill' Frampton desperate to prove Warrington wrong

Ahead of his IBF featherweight title bout with Josh Warrington, Carl Frampton is keen to prove he is far from "over the hill".

Carl Frampton and Josh Warrington.   -  Getty Images

Carl Frampton is out to prove he is not past his peak when he challenges Josh Warrington for the IBF featherweight title on Saturday.

The Northern Irishman (26-1) takes on Warrington in Manchester this weekend on the back of three successive victories during which he failed to hit the heights of the preceding pair of epic bouts with Leo Santa Cruz.

Warrington, meanwhile, is protecting an unblemished 27-0 record as well as his belt, and suggested earlier this week that Frampton is not an elite fighter.

In a media conference on Wednesday, the champion insisted some of his remarks regarding his opponent have been taken out of context, but Frampton - at 31, three years the elder of the two - believes he is being underestimated.

"I think that no matter what Josh and his team say, they think I am over the hill," he said.

"I've seen things in the media that suggest that and when this fight is taking place and it's getting sticky if it turns into a dog fight, I'm prepared for it and that's when they'll realise that I'm not over the hill.

"Josh thinks he wants this more than me but it would be very hard to want this title more than I do right now."

"Tensions grow when fights get closer," Warrington countered. "I said from 12 weeks ago when we sat face to face that I have respect for him and that's what I've done.

"There have been a a few interviews where my words have been twisted but I haven't looked at him as over the hill. I'm preparing for him in his ultimate prime as he says he is and that excites me. That's what makes me get up and graft my a*** off.

"I never said that he was past his best. All I said was you can't judge the performances against [Nonito] Donaire, [Luke] Jackson or the other guy [Horacio Garcia]. I've prepared for the very best Carl Frampton."

Saturday's bout is Warrington's first defence of the belt he took from Lee Selby in May, and the Leeds-born fighter insists the perks of global recognition have not extended far beyond the occasional benefit in his home city.

"During the World Cup, it got me a few sambucas in a few night clubs and free parking in Leeds city centre so I'm enjoying the benefits but it goes in a box at the end of my bed and that's it," he said.

"I still pick dog s*** up out of the garden - I haven't changed as a person. I want to go further. I want more."

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