Carl Frampton confirms split from manager Barry McGuigan

Carl Frampton and Barry McGuigan
Carl Frampton has been managed by Barry McGuigan since turning professional in 2009

Northern Irish boxer Carl Frampton has confirmed his long-standing partnership with manager Barry McGuigan's Cyclone Promotions has come to an end.

Frampton has been managed by McGuigan since turning professional in 2009, winning world titles at two weights.

The 30-year-old said he was "confident now is the right time to move forward and take my career into my own hands".

Frampton was scheduled to fight Mexican Andres Gutierrez on 29 July but the contest was postponed at the 11th hour.

The Belfast man was one pound overweight but his first bout since his defeat by Leo Santa Cruz last January was still scheduled to go ahead until his Mexican opponent was injured after slipping in the shower.

Frampton and McGuigan, a former world featherweight champion, both apologised to the public, but behind the scenes it is understood their relationship was beginning to unravel.

Less than 10 days before Frampton's scheduled contest with Gutierrez, the Belfast boxer had resigned as a director of Cyclone Promotions.

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Carl Frampton has confirmed his split from manager Barry McGuigan

"I would like to thank Barry, the McGuigan family and Cyclone Promotions for our time together," read Frampton's statement on Monday.

"I still believe that I'm the best featherweight in the world and I promise my fans that I am continuing with my efforts to get my homecoming fight rescheduled in the very near future."

Cyclone Promotions have confirmed that they will not be making any statement on Monday about Frampton's departure from the fold.

How has it come to this?

Frampton and McGuigan's relationship had appeared exceptionally close until very recently.

The fighter was also trained by McGuigan's son Shane, while McGuigan's wife Sandra, and their other sons, Blain and Jake, are also heavily involved in Cyclone Promotions.

Earlier this year, there was a three-part documentary series shown on BBC TV, Fight Game: The McGuigans, which looked at the inner workings of Cyclone Promotions and closely followed Frampton's preparations for both his world title bouts in the US with Santa Cruz.

After landing the European belt by beating Kiko Martinez in February 2013, Frampton defeated the Spaniard again 19 months later to win his first world title as he clinched the IBF super-bantamweight title.

Barry McGuigan (left) celebrates as Frampton is hoisted into the air by trainer Shane McGuigan after his victory over Leo Santa Cruz in New York a year ago
Carl Frampton is trained by Barry McGuigan's son Shane

Frampton added the WBA belt to the IBF crown in February 2016 as he overcame England's Scott Quigg in one of three successful world super-bantamweight title defences before defeating Santa Cruz in New York to win the WBA featherweight title just over a year ago.

That win made him Northern Ireland's first two-weight world champion, and he was named boxer of 2016 by both Ring Magazine and ESPN.

However, Santa Cruz avenged his New York defeat as he beat Frampton in Las Vegas to regain the WBA featherweight title last January.

After six months out of the ring, Frampton was supposed to fight Gutierrez in his home town just over two weeks ago, but the Mexican's slip in his shower ultimately saw that fight called off.

Frampton looked uncomfortable as he and McGuigan were jointly interviewed following the bizarre series of events which led to the cancellation of the Gutierrez contest.

BBC Sport NI understands that the postponement of the contest put added pressure on an already strained relationship.

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