First Minister, the Rt. Hon. Arlene Foster, and the deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness, have laid out the Stormont welcome mat for world champion Carl Frampton and his title challenger Leo Santa Cruz.
Ahead of the rematch at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on 28 January 2017, the First Minister, Arlene Foster said: “Carl Frampton is a superb ambassador for Northern Ireland and through his boxing skills, once again puts us in the global eye.
“It is a privilege to welcome Carl and Leo Santa Cruz to Stormont. I have no doubt that many of us will be keeping a very close eye on the outcome of this very exciting rematch from Northern Ireland.
“Carl Frampton is a wonderful young man who embodies everything that is good about Northern Ireland. His success is the result of many years of hard work and dedication and we wish him continued success in this rematch against Leo Santa Cruz.”
The deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness: “It was fantastic to welcome Carl Frampton and Leo Santa Cruz to Stormont today. Both have proven they are incredible boxers who have enjoyed considerable sporting success in their careers. I am very much looking forward to the rematch in January and although I wished Leo Santa Cruz well today, I will be joining all local fans in getting behind our very own Carl Frampton.
“The preparation and training Carl has committed to in the run up to the bout early in the New Year again shows the personal sacrifices Carl and his family continue to make to achieve this major success. Carl Frampton is a fine role model and a source of great inspiration, particularly to our young people.”
Northern Ireland’s first ever two weight world champion said after his visit to Stormont Castle: “After a noisy press conference it was great to head up to Stormont to meet the First Minister, Arlene Foster and the deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness, it is always a pleasure to converse with both of them. I’m sure Team Santa Cruz will not forget this meeting with our leading politicians. I’m looking forward to defending my world title in Las Vegas and representing Northern Ireland in the best way I can."
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