If there’s one thing Jamel Herring has experience plenty of times over the past year, it’s fight postponements.
Testing positive for COVID-19, opponents suffering injuries, Herring has seen it all when it comes to his fights being postponed during the pandemic. Herring, the WBO super featherweight champion, will finally get a chance to put the postponements behind him when he finally gets his long-awaited showdown against Carl Frampton on April 3 in Dubai.
It’s easy for a fighter to get discouraged because of the constant changes in his schedule resulting in him being out of the ring for longer than anticipated. Still, Herring says he has not lost focus despite all the fight postponements he’s been through.
“I was able to stay focused with all the postponements because I had that motivation and hunger. I know this is still a big fight. I didn’t want to let it go,” Herring said.
The title bout, set to stream on ESPN+, was originally set for February until it got delayed due to Frampton suffering a minor hand injury. Even before that, a title clash between the two fighters had been in the works in some way, shape and form since late 2019.
Frampton presents perhaps the toughest test for Herring as a champion thus far. Frampton previously won titles at super bantamweight and featherweight and a win over Herring will make him the first Irish boxer in history to win titles in three divisions.
For Herring, he views this fight as a career-defining bout. He’s been waiting for this fight for roughly 18 months and he believes it is time for him to make a statement and beat Frampton.
“Yes, a win over Frampton would be a career-defining milestone. You want to win a world title. OK, we win the world title. Well, what’s next? We had to successfully defend our title to be considered a real champion. I’m getting to the conversation of, ‘Oh, you want to face the other champions and the other big names,’ and Carl Frampton is a two-division world champion. He has done great things in his career. Since November 2019, this fight has been talked about, and this is my moment. This is what I’ve worked for. This is what I’ve been asking for. This is a big fight for me now,” Herring said.
Herring vs. Frampton streams on ESPN+ on April 3 with a two-fight main card set to start at 4 p.m. ET.