Carl Frampton will attempt to become a three-weight world champion when he fights WBO world super-featherweight champion Jamel Herring on 27 February.
Frampton stopped Darren Traynor in an interim fight in August.
Herring overcame Jonathan Oquendo after a disqualification in Las Vegas.
“I’m delighted to finally get a date nailed down for this fight that has now been talked about for over a year,” said Frampton.
“I have the utmost respect for Jamel as a fighter and as a man but there is nobody stopping me on becoming the island of Ireland’s only ever three-weight world champ, one of Britain’s only ever three-weight world champions and potentially have one foot in the hall of fame.”
Frampton became world champion at super-bantamweight in September 2014 when he defeated Kiko Martinez at the Titanic Quarter, followed by successful defences against Chris Avalos and Alejandro Gonzalez.
The Belfast boxer unified his IBF belt with Scott Quigg’s WBA title in Manchester, where Frampton prevailed on points.
The 33-year-old was then involved in two memorable encounters with Leo Santa Cruz at featherweight – Frampton became a two-weight world champion at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, only to come off second best in the rematch at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Frampton set about a rebuild following his Santa Cruz setback and teamed up with promoter Frank Warren.
He was quickly back in the title mix and won the WBO interim world featherweight title with a comprehensive defeat of the decorated Nonito Donaire at the SSE Arena in April 2018.
In August of the same year he fulfilled a childhood dream of boxing at Belfast’s Windsor Park and his Interim status was maintained with a ninth round stoppage of the Australian Olympian Luke Jackson.
Four months later Frampton lost to Josh Warrington, who retained his IBF world featherweight title at the Manchester Arena.
After considering his future, Frampton decided to go again at super featherweight and got back to winning ways with a clear points victory over Tyler McCreary in November of last year in Las Vegas.
Herring ‘upsets the odds’ to claim belt
Herring, 34, carries a record of 21-2 (10 KOs) and he upset the odds in May last year by defeating the defending WBO world super-featherweight champion Masayuki Ito in Florida.
Prior to this his only title action came with a challenge for the vacant USBA title in September 2018, which he beat John Vincent Moralde on points.
Southpaw Herring defended his world title in November 2019 against mandatory challenger Lamont Roach and won comfortably via decision.
Absence of Frampton fans ‘only downside’
Promoter Frank Warren said: “I am thrilled we are able to deliver this huge opportunity for Carl to reinforce his position as the top Irish fighter of his or any other generation.
“Carl has been and is a tremendous ambassador for the sport and his huge following is testament to the qualities he shows in and out of the ring. The only downside to this fight coming about now is that he will be going into battle without his legion of Belfast fans roaring him on.
“For Carl to become a three-weight world champion would really be something else and in many ways a fitting finale to a magnificent career, although it might not quite be the end of the story.”
‘The biggest fight of my career to date’
Herring commented: “I’m really excited that the fight is finally happening, more importantly it’ll be an honour to share the ring with a true warrior, and class act such as Carl Frampton. It may be the biggest fight of my career to date, but I’ll be more than ready for the task ahead.
“There’s a lot on the line, and I know he’s aiming to make history, but he’ll have to wait another day, because I plan on returning home with my title in hand.