Carl Frampton targeting world title showdown after Nonito Donaire

Carl Frampton will take on seven-time World Champion Nonito Donaire at the SSE Arena in his hometown of Belfast on Apr. 21. Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Carl Frampton is hoping to earn a world title shot in the summer, provided that he comes through his April 21 fight with Filipino boxer Nonito Donaire.

Frampton (24-1, 14KOs) surrendered his WBA featherweight strap in a rematch with Leo Santa Cruz last year, but is hoping to silence his doubters ahead of what could be a year of redemption after a torrid 2017.

"I'm hoping to fight for a world title in the summer," said Frampton at a respectful press conference between the two fighters.

"What better opponent to get you ready for that other than Nonito Donaire? What's the point in fighting a knock-over job? It's great to be involved on these occasions.

"These [a world title fight and the chance to fight at Windsor Park] are all things that are in the future... If I don't win this fight then these things won't happen."

After beating Horacio Garcia in his comeback fight late in 2017 following a 10-month absence from the ring, Frampton is looking to re-assert his status as one of the world's top featherweights. However, Frampton knows that former four-weight world champion Donaire will not be an easy bout by any means.

"His [Donaire's] name was mentioned and we didn't speak about any other fighter," added Frampton. "Once his name was mentioned I wanted the fight. A couple of years ago you wouldn't believe that a guy of his calibre would come to Belfast.

"I'm just grateful that a name like Donaire is coming here to Belfast. In my opinion, he is the biggest away fighter to ever come here to fight.

"I desperately want to win this fight because I see the carrot of fighting at Windsor Park"

Donaire (38-4, 24 KOs) will be fighting in Britain for the first time when he steps into the ring in Belfast, but he acknowledges that Frampton is an "incredible fighter", recognising that he will have to be on the top of his game to better the Northern Irishman in his hometown.

"Frampton is someone that you cannot take lightly," said Donaire. "You have to be at 100% or there's no turning back.

"I know there's going to be boos and yelling here in Belfast at the fight, but I welcome that because that's what support is all about! It will fuel me to be inspired."