Video: Carl Frampton and Hugo Cazares ready to go to war at Odyssey

Forget WBC champion Leo Santa Cruz, forget Las Vegas, forget World title fights - Carl Frampton is fully focused on Hugo Cazares before they clash at the Odyssey on Friday night.

Tigers Bay Super-bantamweight Frampton and Cazares meet in a Final Eliminator for the WBC World title - which would lead the winner to a shot at Champion Santa Cruz in the coming months.

Carl Frampton and Barry McGuigan

Carl Frampton and Barry McGuigan

Unbeaten Frampton and the experienced Cazares both know that defeat is not an option at this stage of their careers.

A loss for Frampton would leave him in the wilderness, while former two time World champion Cazares would have to think about heading for the exit door at the age of 36.

Friday night’s clash really is a ‘win or bust’ for both fighters and Frampton - who looked calm and relaxed at yesterday’s press conference in Belfast - knows how high the stakes are when he takes to the ring to face Cazares.

“He has to win. He is in the twilight of his career and if he does not win the World title shot is out the window.

“It is the same for me, if I lose it will set my career back a couple of years so it is very, very important that I do win and look good - but this a winner takes all situation and I don’t intend losing.”

Frampton - unbeaten in 17 fights to date - talked about ‘going to war’ and there will be ‘blood and guts’ - while Cazares also said he wanted ‘war’ and Frampton will not have to ‘look for me.’

But ‘The Jackal’ is not convinced that 49 fight veteran Cazares will stand and fight.

“I don’t think he will, but he will have to at some stage. He has got 36 year old legs and he is not going to be able to run all night.

“Early on I think he will try and box and move but he is promising that he is going to stand and fight - and I hope he does.”

And the Belfast banger - who has stopped 12 of his 17 opponents - believes Cazares is beginning to feel the heat.

“He was smiling the first time I met him, but now he is a wee bit more edgy and I think he is struggling to make the weight.

“And there are rumours that he has blow heaters in his room but maybe because he is Mexican he is feeling the lovely Belfast air as it is 40 degrees in Mexico at the moment.

“He is getting a wee bit edgy but you expect that as it is getting close to the fight.”

But Cazares says he sees nothing to fear from Frampton’s firepower.

“My training camp and preparation has gone very well and I am ready for Frampton.

“I was once unbeaten but that can go, I have the expreience of all the fights I have been in and I am ready for this one.

“I am highly motivated because if I beat Frampton I have the chance to become a three time World champion.

“This is my aim, I am ready to go to war at the Odyssey and I hope the fans shout, scream and cheer. It will have no effect on me.

“It is just Carl and me in the ring and I have come here to win, no-matter what.”

But Frampton’s manager and Cyclone Promotions CEO Barry McGuigam says Cazares is in for a nasty surprise.

“Cazares has fought all over the world and he has fought in front of large crowds before but I believe the crowd will get to him.

“The crowds here are very, very hostile and he will not fully understand that until he makes his walk to the ring.

“He says it will not worry him, but let us wait and see. The Belfast crowd is completely different to anything else in the world.

“The noise is fantastic and the crowd is very, very hostile,” he added.

McGuigan admits that both fighters will put it all on the line on Friday night.

“It is a huge pressure fight for both fighters. For Hugo it is a last chance and for Carl it is a first chance to get a shot at a World title.

“We have already knocked out a World champion in Kiko Martinez and we have now gone down a tougher route in the Santa Cruz route as he is the best attacking Super-bantamweight in the world. Guillermo Rigondeaux is more talented but nobody wants to watch him. People want to watch Carl and Santa Cruz.

“But we have to win well on Friday night and then we move on to Santa Cruz.”

And McGuigan - with Frampton a big favourite with the bookmakers to win the fight - believes Cazares will not want to go to war with his fighter.

“He is saying that but he will not do that. We are not that foolish and he will not stand and trade.

“I guarentee he will not stand and trade. That is a fact,” he added.

McGuigan says that rumours of them overlooking Cazares to concentrate on Santa Cruz is completely not true.

“We talk about Santa Cruz because I am managing Carl and Santa Cruz is our ultimate goal - but all our focus at this stage is on Hugo Cazares.

“We are not underestimating Hugo Cazares, we are not looking beyond him. We have done every possible thing to get ready for this guy.

“We have trained for 15 weeks, we have done over 220 rounds of sparring and we have covered every angle, worked very hard and we would not have gone through all of that for us to overlook Cazares,” he added.

“This is a very tough fight for Carl but he has prepared properly and the fans have not yet seen the best of Carl.

“There is still so much more to come from him and we have only seen about 60 percent of the abilty and the talent he has.

“Cazares will find out in the Odyssey how good Carl is and I believe Carl will put on a fantastic performance.”