New IBF featherweight champion Josh Warrington has made it clear who he wants to fight next.
‘The Leeds Warrior’ overcame Kiko Martinez in their rematch last weekend at the city’s First Direct Arena to become a two-time world champion at 126lbs.
While he recovers from a broken jaw and a broken hand the 31-year-old has said who he wants to fight next.
“Santa Cruz is a name I’ve been shouting out for a long time. He was the champion when I first won the title back in 2018,” Warrington told Press Association.
“It’s got the attachment of going to America. How long have I been saying I want to go to the States? “I’ve done everything I want to do over here in terms of the venues I want to fight in.
“It’s just something personal, a personal goal I want to achieve by fighting in America, in someone else’s backyard. Santa Cruz in the States.”
A unification against the WBA ‘Super’ champion may supersede a mandatory defence against current IBF number one challenger Luis Alberto Lopez. Warrington’s promoter Eddie Hearn has also dangled a carrot of fighting at Nottingham Forest’s City Ground against WBA ‘Regular’ title holder Leigh Wood.
Warrington though appears to have a three-fight plan marked out which does include Wood as well as the man who inflicted the first defeat on the IBF champion’s career.
“Santa Cruz, then putting [Mauricio] Lara to bed and then Leigh Wood, a big domestic showdown at the City Ground.
“That would be fantastic. I would be more than happy with that. Let’s just see what happens.”