Katie Taylor Moves Up in an Attempt to Become a Two Weight Champion
By: Hans Themistode
One of the very best women boxers in the world will return to the ring on November 2nd, at the O2 arena, in Manchester, England. She’ll be at the top of the billing on a card that will feature Joshua Buatsi, Anthony Crolla and a host of others.
The last time Taylor was seen in the ring, she was winning a hard fought but controversial decision against Delfine Persoon. It was a rougher than expected contest as Persoon had every reason to believe that she had done enough to win that contest.
Persoon successfully roughed Taylor up throughout the contest and made it as ugly as possible. Taylor seemed to have a difficult time adjusting to the physicality of Persoon. Still, Taylor managed to box her way to a decision.
The win for Taylor gave her the WBC Lightweight title which was the last belt at the weight class, making her an undisputed champion at the weight. Now that she has captured the last piece of the championship puzzle, she is looking for an even bigger challenge as she will be moving up in weight to take on WBO Super Lightweight champion Christina Linardatou.
“It’s a new challenge at a new weight and something I’m really excited about,” said Taylor. “I still feel like I have so much left to achieve in the sport and becoming a two-weight world champion is one of those goals.”
As for her opponent, Linardatou hasn’t lost a contest since 2016. Since then she has won four fights in a row and will be facing the biggest match of her career. Don’t expect the pressure of the moment to get to Linardatou.
“I plan on leaving England with my title,” said Taylor. “If I need to knock Katie Taylor out in order to retain the title, that’s what I’ll do.”
The move up in weight will have many fearing that a future contest against seven division champion Amanda Serrano is now unlikely. Taylor assured everyone that her plan isn’t to simply campaign at Super Lightweight.
“There are still so many huge fights out there for me like the Amanda Serrano fight, a rematch with Delfine Persoon and a fight with Cecilia Brækhus but the first goal is November 2 and winning another world title. I don’t have any issues making lightweight so I think I can move comfortably between the two weights. I always want to push myself and Christina is an excellent world champion, so it will be a big test for me.”
Taylor and Linardatou seem highly motivated to put on a show but it will be another fighter on the card who will receive most of the attention.
Former champion Anthony Crolla will step into the ring for one final time. It’s been a long and successful 13 year career for Crolla which first started in Manchester England. He has managed to win his fair of big fights including against Ismael Barroso, Ricky Burns and a championship winning effort against Darleys Perez. His career is now coming full circle as it will officially come to an end in the same place that it started 13 years ago.
Boxing Insider Notebook: Haney, Prograis, Taylor, Peltz, Fury, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of September 3rd to September 10th; covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
‘Time to Shine’ Prograis and Taylor Face-to-Face in London Ahead of Ali Trophy Final
USA’s Regis Prograis (24-0, 20 KOs) and Scotland’s Josh Taylor (15-0, 13 KOs) met on Monday in England’s capital at an intense kickoff press conference ahead of their highly anticipated WBSS Super-Lightweight Ali Trophy Final at The O2 in London on October 26, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and DAZN in the U.S.
“I am excited to come to London, most fighters don’t get this chance in a lifetime,” said Prograis, WBA World Champion & WBC Diamond Champion.
The New Orleans native known as the ‘Rougarou, a werewolf-like creature of Louisiana’s folklore, does not see the final as a 50-50 match-up.
“Everybody always says they are going to beat me. Everybody says it was going to be a 50/50 fight but I blow everyone up. He is taller than me, he is longer than me, but you can’t determine my heart on the tale of the tape. And you can’t determine my IQ, Not to be cocky, but I can’t see him beating me.”
The beast from the bayou is up against ‘The Tartan Tornado’ from Prestonpans who is at least as confident in his own abilities.
“I am full of confidence,” said Taylor, IBF World Champion & WBC Silver Champion.
“I think I am bigger than him, quicker than him, stronger than him, and I punch just as hard as him. If he walks onto a shot I can get him out of there or I can out-box him for the full 12 rounds.
“I am headlining the show down here, tapping into the British fans, so I can’t wait,” he added. “Right now, I believe myself and Regis are the best two in the division, we are the guys to beat. And we are going to prove it on October 26. This is my time to shine and I am super confident.”
“This is it, the Champions League of boxing,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer. “This is a super final, the super-lightweight final for the Ali Trophy and ‘the man to beat in the division’. It’s not often you see the best against the best and this is one of the best fights of the year.
“I have watched them both and studied them extensively. Regis likes to keep his distance and is very fast in and out whilst Josh will come right at you and those two styles blend well.
“I can’t predict who wins. It’s really a dream to have two undefeated champions, two huge personalities in the final and we are very much looking forward to it.”
Prograis and Taylor entered the World Boxing Super Series and the quest for the Ali Trophy as the two highest-seeded boxers in a loaded 140lb bracket.
No. 1 seed Prograis earned his spot in the final by outdoing Terry Flanagan on points last October, and then went on to stop Kiryl Relikh in round 6 and take the WBA World title in the semi in late April. Meanwhile, second seed Taylor stopped Ryan Martin in round 7 last November and then proceeded to decision Ivan Baranchyk to claim the IBF World title in May.
The WBSS Super-Lightweight Ali Trophy Final at The O2 in London on October 26 is shown live via Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and DAZN in the U.S.
DAZN, the world’s largest dedicated live sports streaming service, will exclusively bring U.S. fight fans the WBSS Season II Finals. To sign up for a one-month free trial, fans can visit DAZN.com or download the DAZN app to their preferred connected device.
Heavy: Fury vs. Schwarz Premieres on ESPN on September 12th
Tyson Fury walked to the ring for his Las Vegas debut June 15 dressed like Apollo Creed and flanked by showgirls. He was set to defend his lineal heavyweight title against Tom Schwarz, but first, the man who authored one of sport’s greatest comeback stories wanted to give the fans a show.
Two days before Fury returns to the ring to defend his crown against unbeaten contender Otto Wallin this Saturday, September 14 live and exclusively on ESPN+ (11 p.m. ET/8 p.m. PT), director Peter Berg and Film 45 give viewers an intimate portrait of Fury and Schwarz in the days, and tense moments, leading up to their fight.
Produced and directed by renowned filmmaker Berg, the creator and executive producer of the multiple award-winning NBC drama series “Friday Night Lights” and several ESPN Films’ “30 for 30” installments, “HEAVY: Fury v Schwarz” features behind-the-scenes footage of Fury and his then-undefeated challenger as they prepared for their showdown. The documentary is executive produced by Matthew Goldberg, Brandon Carroll and Matthew Shattuck for Film 45, and it will premiere this Thursday, September 12 at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on ESPN.
Fury won the lineal and unified heavyweight titles in November 2015 with a unanimous decision over longtime champion Wladimir Klitschko, but mental health and substance abuse issues nearly derailed his career. He returned to the ring in June 2018, and less than six months later, fought WBC world champion Deontay Wilder to a highly disputed draw in one of the sport’s most memorable heavyweight championship battles. Now a noted mental health advocate and motivational speaker, Fury is fighting for his boxing legacy and aiming to inspire those afflicted with mental illness.
“We are excited to provide a raw and intimate account of the Tyson Fury vs. Tom Schwarz fight,” said Berg. “The documentary takes viewers into the minds and lives of the boxers as they navigate the pressures of the mentally and physically taxing sport.”
‘“HEAVY: Fury v Schwarz” is a terrific documentary and we are thrilled to be able to bring it to boxing fans on ESPN platforms, the home of combat sports,” Matt Kenny, vice president of programming at ESPN said. “Peter Berg is a master storyteller of exceptional credentials who has created an unforgettable portrait of Fury’s Las Vegas breakout moment.”
KSI and Logan Paul 2 Tickets On Pre-Sale Now
Presale tickets are now LIVE for the rematch between KSI and Logan Paul at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles on Saturday November 9, live on DAZN in a fight presented by Eddie Hearn for Matchroom Boxing USA in association with OP Talent.
The YouTube rivals clashed in August 2018 at the sold-out Manchester Arena in Manchester, England and was watched by over 1 million live pay-per-view buyers on YouTube, with the fight ending in a majority draw with KSI edging the battle on one card with two judges unable to split them.
Now the pair meet once again to settle the score in the ring with Paul welcoming his rival to his LA backyard, and this time they do so as professional fighters having passed their relevant medicals last week, and they will come face-to-face for the first time since their fight at a launch press conference in Los Angeles on Saturday September 14, which is when tickets will go on
The larger-than-life internet stars with over 40 million YouTube subscribers between them have been itching to get their hands on each other once again, as have their loyal armies of fans, and now the countdown begins to their second night in the boxing spotlight.
Devin Haney Training Camp Quotes
Rising star and undefeated lightweight contender, Devin “The Dream” Haney (22-0, 14 KOs), has wrapped up training camp for his upcoming showdown with Zaur Abdullaev (11-0, 7 KOs).
Haney vs. Abdullaev, promoted by Matchroom Boxing and Devin Haney Promotions, will be a 12-round main event bout for the WBC interim lightweight championship on Friday September 13 at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK.
Haney, who will be making his first appearance at “The Mecca of Boxing” – Madison Square Garden, will look to make it a memorable one as he has plans to take over the lightweight division.
TICKETS START AT JUST $30 (PLUS FEES) AND ARE AVAILABLE FROM TICKETMASTER HERE
Here is what Haney had to say about the upcoming fight:
On his upcoming fight against Zaur Abdullaev:
“I know Abdullaev is focused, he’s been at the top of the rankings for a while now, so I know he’s ready to fight. He’s an undefeated fighter, who has beaten some quality opposition, so I take him very seriously. I’m just very excited to face Abdullaev because it will show the world my skills and why I am the new face of the sport.”
On his recent training camp:
“Training camp has been great. We started strength and conditioning with Coach Reggie at Phase 1. I really got stronger and I can feel the difference. I spent the next portion of camp at the SNAC System facility in the Bay Area working with Victor Conte. There I worked on my speed and explosiveness with well renowned track coach Remi Korchemny. I’ve had a world class training camp, with everything from strength and conditioning, to tremendous sparring, included with a lot of rest and recovery. This will be another memorable performance like my last fight on DAZN.”
On fighting for the WBC interim lightweight title:
“The WBC Interim World Championship means a lot to me. Some people kept labeling me a prospect when I knew I was so much more. Being able to fight for an Interim World Title means everything. This not only makes me the WBC mandatory for Vasiliy Lomacheno, but I’m able to do Interim Title defenses, until Loma is ready to fight. I believe the winner of Haney vs Abdullaev is in a really good position with the WBC.”
On headlining at Madison Square Garden on DAZN?
“This is something I’ve always dreamed about for sure. MSG is the most historic and iconic arena in all of sports. I’m headlining a card full of great fights. Heather Hardy (22-0) vs Amanda Serrano (36-1) for the WBO World Female Featherweight Title will be a very exciting fight. My good friend from Las Vegas, Michael Hunter (17-1) vs Sergey Kuzmin (15-0) will be a terrific fight as well. There are only two losses between all six of the fighters on the main card. This is my first time at the Hulu Theater, and I’m going to put on a helluva show. Everyone should get their tickets now, because it’s going to be a great night of boxing and entertainment.”
Padilla-Tomas Fight Headlines Peltz’ 50th Anniversary Card October 4th in Philadelphia
Junior welterweights Victor Padilla, of Berlin, NJ, and Romain Tomas, of Brooklyn, NY, will square off in the main event Friday evening, Oct. 4, at the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia.
The eight-bout card, labeled Blood, Sweat & 50 Years, will celebrate the Golden Anniversary of Peltz Boxing Promotions. The card is being promoted by Raging Babe (Michelle Rosado) with J Russell Peltz serving as the matchmaker. First bout 7:30 p.m.
Going old-school on this one, Peltz has scheduled the Padilla-Tomas fight for six rounds, harking back to the first two decades of the 20th century when all main events in Pennsylvania were limited to that distance.
The 20-year-old Padilla, originally from Vieques, Puerto Rico, is a southpaw with speed and power. He has won all five of his fights by first-round knockout. In fact, he has only been in the ring for a total of six minutes, 29 seconds, in those five contests. Although none of his five opponents had a winning record when he fought them—their combined mark was 17-29-1 at the time—Padilla still is considered one of the best young pros on the East Coast. He is promoted by Lou DiBella’s DiBella Entertainment.
The 30-year-old Tomas is originally from Emerainville in the Seine-et-Marne region of France, outside Paris. He brings an 8-2 record into the fight with Padilla. Tomas is coming off his biggest career win, a six-round decision over previously unbeaten (7-0) Omar Bordoy in Bordoy’s nearby backyard of Hampton, NH.
“Some of the greatest fighters of all-time appeared in hundreds of six-round main events during those 20 years at the turn of the last century,” said promoter J Russell Peltz. “In my 50 years in boxing, this marks the first time I have been involved with a six-round main event. When you’ve never done something before, often that is the best reason for doing it.
“Hall-of-Fame champions like Jack Johnson and Benny Leonard boxed six-round main events in Philadelphia during those years,” said Peltz. “How about Stanley Ketchell vs. Sam Langford or Joe Gans taking on Jack Blackburn? I would have loved to have seen those battles. Lew Tendler, Abe Attell, Terrible Terry McGovern, Rocky Kansas, Philadelphia Jack O’Brien. Philadelphia was the boxing capital of the country and six-round main events was the norm.
“I’m an old-school kind of guy so this is going to be fun for me. This represents the past and Padilla vs. Tomas will give us a peek into the future.”
The undercard is topped by three additional six-round rematches.
Junior middleweights Roque Zapata, of Culpeper, VA, and Isaiah Wise, of North Philadelphia, meet in a rematch of their 2016 at the 2300 Arena, won by Zapata via majority four-round decision, the first loss of Wise’ career.
Zapata (6-2-4) also defeated Fred Jenkins, Jr., early in 2017 over six rounds in the same ring. Wise (7-2-1, 4 K0s) last boxed 10 months ago when he knocked out Andy Gonzales, of Worcester, MA, at the 2300 Arena.
Junior welterweights Gerardo Martinez, of Coatesville, PA, and Osnel Charles, of Atlantic City, collide in the other six-round rematch.
Martinez (4-1, 1 K0) earned a four-round majority decision over Charles (13-19-1, 2 K0s) at the 2300 Arena. While Martinez has been idle since, Charles picked up a four-round points victory in June over Laquan Lewis, of Brooklyn, NY, at the Parx Casino in Bensalem, PA.
North Philadelphia welterweight Marcel Rivers (7-1, 4 K0s) will fight in a six round contest.
Four-rounders scheduled for Oct. 4 include: Shinard Bunch, of Trenton, NJ, vs. Rakym Dyer, of South Philadelphia, welterweights; Christopher Burgos, North Philadelphia, vs. Tyree Arnold, North Philadelphia, junior welterweights; Vinnie Denierio, Elmira, NY, vs. Seifullah Wise, North Philadelphia, lightweights.
Lightweight Shamar Fulton, of North Philadelphia, also will appear in a four-round contest.
Regis Prograis: “I’m Looking Forward To Fighting The Best Josh Taylor”
By: Sean Crose
“I’m very excited to get everything settled for this fight,” the 24-0 Regis Prograis says. “This is the fight I wanted the most and it’s the fight to prove who is the best in the division. My goal has always been the same and that’s to prove I’m the best 140lbs fighter in the world and to become undisputed.” Prograis will be facing the 15-0 Josh Taylor for the World Boxing Super Series’ Ali trophy for the super lightweight division. The bout will go down at London’s O2 arena on October 26th, and will be streamed live on DAZN.
Photo Credit: World Boxing Super Series Twitter Account
“It has always been a dream for me to fight in London,” says Prograis. “The boxing fans in the UK are some of the best in the world and I can’t wait to go and put on a show. I know once they see me fight they’ll be fans for life.” Although he has a well deserved hard hitting reputation, Prograis makes it clear he’s not going to take Taylor lightly. “Taylor is in my opinion is the 2nd 140lbs in the world after myself. He had two great performances leading into the finals and I’m looking forward to fighting the best Josh Taylor on October 26th.”
As for Scotland’s Taylor, the man is clearly eager to face New Orleans’ native Prograis. “I’m massively excited,” Taylor says. “I want to prove that I’m the best in the division by taking on the best fighters. Now it’s finally over the line I can concentrate on getting to work in the gym and going full steam ahead again.” Taylor goes on to say he feels he has the goods to beat his highly regarded American opponent. “I’m very confident that I can outbox him and outfight him as well,” he says. “I can’t see anything other than a Josh Taylor win on October 26. It will be a huge buzz to fight for the Muhammad Ali trophy in front of a huge crowd at The O2. I believe that I am the best fighter in the division and now it’s time to prove it.”
Per Matchroom Boxing: “Prograis and Taylor entered the WBSS and the quest for the Ali Trophy as the two highest-seeded boxers in a loaded Super-Lightweight bracket. No.1 seed Prograis earned his spot in the final by outdoing Terry Flanagan on points last October, and then went on to stop Kiryl Relikh in six rounds and take the WBA World title in the semi in late April. Meanwhile, No.2 seed Taylor stopped Ryan Martin in round 7 last November, and then proceeded to decision Ivan Baranchyk to claim the IBF World title in May.”
As things stand, Prograis, who is known as “Rougarou,” holds the WBA world and WBC diamond super lightweight titles while Taylor, who is known as “The TartanTornado,” holds the IBF word and WBC silver super lightweight titles. The October 26th card will also see the 31-9 heavyweight veteran Derek Chisora face off against the 26-2 Joseph Parker, who once held the WBO world heavyweight title. Both Prograis-Taylor and Chisora-Parker are scheduled for 12 rounds.
Katie Taylor on the Verge of History
By: Shane Willoughby
Whilst all eyes are on Anthony Joshua this Saturday who is defending his titles at Madison Square Gardens, Katie Taylor can make history on the undercard.
Katie Taylor (13-0) has the opportunity to become the first Irish undisputed champion – male or female, with a victory over Delfine Persoon (43-1).
Like AJ, Taylor is the IBF, WBO and WBA champion and will be facing the number 1 lightweight in the world for her WBC crown.
The Brit has an amazing career undefeated in 13 fights but will have a tough task trying to dethrone Persoon who has held the title since 2014 and has won 34 consecutive fights.
Either fighter will be making history with a victory, as there has never been a Lightweight in the sport to hold all four versions of a world title at the same time.
Female boxing is on the rise and 2019 has already seen Claressa Shields headline an event and become Undisputed champion at middleweight. The winner of Persoon and Taylor will be 1 of 3 undisputed champions currently in women’s boxing.
Maybe the men might need to take a leaf from the women. Boxing fans around the world having been begging for the best to fight the best but to no avail. Women’s boxing is absent of all the politics that has diseased and contaminated the men’s game.
Unfortunately, in any other world an undisputed fight will be mainstream media and getting a great deal of coverage. Britain’s first undisputed champion since Lennox Lewis.
But when Anthony Joshua is fighting, it’s no surprise that the undercard fighters are left in the shadows, neglected and starving from any form of attention.
However, when AJ is expected to receive $30 million, DAZN and matchroom must not have much money left in the pot to promote anyone else.
Katie Taylor On Delfine Persoon: “May The Best Girl Win”
By: Sean Crose
Heavyweight kingpin Anthony Joshua won’t be the only fighter of note stepping in between the ropes at Madison Square Garden on June 1st. Although the British multi-titlist will be making his American debut that night against the entertaining Andy Ruiz, another acclaimed titlist will be fighting on the card, as well. For Ireland’s Katie Taylor will be facing Delfine Persoon for the undisputed women’s lightweight championship of the world. The 13-0 Taylor currently holds the WBO, IBF, and WBA titles, while Persoon has held the WBC belt for over five years. Their match is scheduled for ten rounds.
“It’s great,” says Taylor, “to have the opportunity to have the chance to become the undisputed champion…every day in camp has been 100% focused on the task at hand so I won’t sit back and think about it until I’ve actually achieved it as that’s what I am like.” Taylor is also excited to return to Madison Square Garden, where she last fought in December. “The chance to fight for the four World titles and the Ring Magazine belt at the Mecca of boxing, MSG,” says Taylor, “I don’t think you could write a better script, it’s an absolute dream. Persoon is recognized as one of the best in the world pound-for-pound and has been the WBC champ now for over five years so it’s the best against the best. This is huge for women’s boxing.”
In Persoon, Taylor is facing a 43-1 champion with one of the most impressive records in the sport. “I think it’s going to be a really hard fight,” Taylor claims. “I’ve watched clips of her and she’s very tall and awkward, she punches non-stop for the ten rounds and I think it’s going to be a very physical fight. It’s a huge challenge but the one that I’ve wanted. She’ll bring the best out of me as I have the utmost respect for her and we’re going to lay it all on the line and may the best girl win. The famous green belt and the Ring Magazine belts being on the line is just amazing.”
This will be Taylor’s fifth fight in a single year – an oddity in today’s fight boxing world, where top fighters rarely step into the ring more than once or twice. As for Persoon, it will be the Belgian titlist’s fourth fight – again, an oddity in today’s fight game.
Taylor Becomes IBF champ as Inoue Dismantles Rodriguez
By: Michael Kane
Josh Taylor is the new IBF Super Lightweight world champion after a dominant display against Ivan Baranchyk in the semi-final of the World Boxing Super Series in Glasgow.
In a night which saw Naoya Inoue put on a dazzling performance in his bantamweight semi-final bout against IBF champion Manny Rodriguez, the roof nearly came off the SSE Hydro Arena as Taylor was proclaimed IBF king.
The fight started off with Taylor working behind the jab and Baranchyk looking to land big body shots. Taylor was looking impressive working at range.
As the rounds went on Taylor abandoned his distance game and stood toe to toe with the Belarussian, with Baranchyk winning the 5th. The 6th started with Baranchyk landing some good body shots however the tide turned as Taylor landed a great shot to head that had Baranchyk on the floor. He got up quick only for Taylor to apply more pressure and have Baranchyk down once more to send the Glasgow crowd wild.
Baranchyk weathered that storm and was able to apply some pressure of his own and probably picked up the 9th round. He looked like he still could cause Taylor some problems.
All Taylor had to do as we moved into the 12th round was work at distance however the last 30 seconds of the rounds both boxers stood in the centre of the circle and traded shots.
As the final bell rang, Taylor was thrust in the air by his coach Shane McGuigan as the Glasgow fans waited expectantly for the decision.
The crowd were not to be disappointed as scores of 117-109, 115-111 and 115-111 would give the Scot a deserved unanimous decision win and Scotland a new world champion.
Taylor now moves on to the final and will face American Regis Prograis, the WBA Super champion, with both belts up for grabs.
Taylor said of the clash, “I feel I’m the best, he feels hes the best. We both did the job to get to the finals. I feel I’ll win the fight quite comfortable, I’m sure he believes the same.” Before leading the crowd in a rendition of Flower of Scotland.
— World Boxing Super Series (@WBSuperSeries) May 18, 2019
In the other world title fight on the card, the Japanese superstar and WBA Regular champion Naoya Inoue would add Manny Rodriguez’ IBF bantamweight title.
Rodriguez was clearly unfancied among the Glasgow public, with some jeers from the crowd, Inoue on the other hand entered the arena as if he was one of Scotland’s own.
The first round started with both fighters landing some nice shots, Inoue landed several body shots that already looked like they could hurt Rodriguez.
It was to be all over in the second as not once, not twice but three times Inoue would have Rodriguez on the canvas as he worked the Puerto Rican’s body.
Rodriguez was widely expected to be Inoue’s toughest test to date but ‘The Monster’ blew yet another opponent away in an awe inspiring performance.
Inoue will now face 4 weight world champion Nonito Donaire in the final.
Taylor and Inoue Look to Advance
By: Oliver McManus
Naoya Inoue strolls into Glasgow at the weekend looking to steam-roll past yet another opponent in yet another world title fight. The WBA’s bantamweight world champion shouldn’t be pigeonholed by way of his slim anime-esque figure with the 26 year old possessing nonchalant fight-ending aggression. Punches thrown from the most innocuous of circumstances have his opponents fearing their safety from every angle, shuffle and punch.
That ability to finish bouts with split-second precision has been meticulously showcased throughout his career with just one of his twelve world title fights going the distance. Perhaps the best characterisation of his effortless brilliance came against Jamie McDonnell last year. McDonnell was granted the daunting task of defending the WBA title against Inoue, in the Japanese fighters first fight in the division, and was caught almost immediately by a mini-flurry of punches that dropped him to the canvas. McDonnell managed to find his senses but was shown no mercy and several shellacking shots to the body finished off the contest for good.
Saturday night at the SSE Hydro will see Inoue look to unify world titles for the first time in his career by taking on, IBF champion, Emmanuel Rodriguez. On paper this should be the toughest test since turning professional (in 2012) with his pathway to bantamweight supremacy barely causing Inoue to break a sweat. Eternal legacy is already secured in his homenation but this next stage of his career is about capitalizing on the Western markets – trying to break the UK and the United States. Inoue has already fought on HBO as part of their ‘Super Fly’ series of events, as well as ESPN+ and now Sky Sports, so he’s principally well endeared with the boxing fraternity: all that’s left now is to turn that frightening reputation into global stardom.
His opponent, meanwhile, will look to become the first Puerto Rican champion to unify belts since Miguel Cotto (unless you count Danny Garcia and his heritage) and move a step closer to a homecoming world title fight in the, not too distant, future. The 26 year old’s background is chequered having been held in high regard within his national amateur system but only garnering international success at a ‘youth’ level. In 2010 he received second-degree burns across a majority of his body whilst attempting to set alight a pickup truck and was on the sidelines for ten months.
Since turning professional in 2012, having failed to qualify for the Olympics, Rodriguez set about a fairly unassuming career picking up regional titles from the big governing bodies. Indeed, he was proving to be quite a threat within the South American circuit with knockout after knockout against domestic prizefighters – finishes that came as out-of-the-blue as Inoue’s but against a far diminished level of opposition. The big break for Rodriguez came last May when he fought Paul Butler for the vacant IBF title. Butler looked ragged but Rodriguez looked exceptional as he dropped his opponent twice in the first round and didn’t put a foot wrong in the following eleven to record scorecards of 120-106, 120-106, 118-108.
Suddenly, just like that, the Puerto Rican had announced himself as a major player but, actually, in his last contest (against Jason Moloney) he just couldn’t settle into a regular rhythm and his Australian challenger nipped at his heels throughout. What we have seen, however, is a robust and awkward style that means his opponents struggle to find repeated success in a contest. He’ll need that rugged defense to be as tight as taut rope if he’s going to give himself a foothold for success in the later rounds but, with Inoue in the opposite corner, that’s a big IF he gets into those later rounds.
Hometown hero Josh Taylor remains convinced he will be the first man to defeat, IBF champion, Ivan Baranchyk and claim the first world title of his career in doing so. Taylor, the WBC Silver titleholder, has been a prodigious talent ever since he turned professional in 2015 – following Commonwealth glory – and the southpaw now gets his chance to cement himself on the world stage. Despite being one of few, genuine, big names not to have been snaffled up by Frank Warren or Eddie Hearn he is no stranger to the big scene having sold out the SSE three times already in his career.
In his last fight, against Ryan Martin, the 28 year old was able to ease into the semi-final with a comprehensive schooling. Martin looked sheepish on the night, perhaps daunted by the occasion, and Taylor capitalized with a punch-perfect display. Baranchyk, meanwhile, advanced to this stage of the competition with a gruesome stoppage victory over Anthony Yigit: his Swedish opponent was taking considerable punishment and the contest was stopped with Yigit’s eye ballooning up to the size of a snooker ball.
We’ve seen a few rough patches from Taylor since he became professional with him sometimes looking beleaguered but the real learning fight was against Viktor Postol. Postol, criminally written off, refused to wilt in the face of relentless attacks and doubled-down in return with pressure of his own. The Beast from Belarus is reminiscent of, his countryman, Kiryl Relikh in respect of his doggedness and tenacity so is a distinct potential banana skin on Taylor’s record and I expect him to find success. Taylor, you imagine, will have the superior class to keep his head above the choppy waters with the scorecards likely giving him a helping hand.
An “I was there” moment if ever there was one – arguably the scariest fighter on the planet making his UK debut and Scotland’s flag bearer looking to secure the first world title of his career.
WBSS Preview: Taylor vs. Baranchyk, Inoue vs. Rodriguez
By: Michael Kane
The World Boxing Super Series has rolled back into Glasgow this week ahead of arguably the biggest show in the UK so far this year.
The conclusion of the semi-final line up of the super lightweight and bantamweight tournaments takes place at the Hydro Arena in Glasgow.
Prestonpans Josh Taylor (14-0, 12 KOs) will face U.S based Belarussian Ivan Baranchyk (19-0, 12KOs), for the IBF world title which Baranchyk won in the quarter final stage against Anthony Yigit. Taylor progressed to the semi-final after a comprehensive win in Glasgow against American Ryan Martin.
It’s only been a month or so since we knew the fight was definitely set after it seemed Baranchyk wasnt happy with World Boxing Super Series. It does go ahead this Saturday in what will be one of the biggest nights in Scottish boxing history as two world titles fights headline the event.
Taylor has fought several times at the Hydro Arena, from winning Commonwealth Games Gold in 2014 to beating former world champion Viktor Postol last year. With a large expectant home crowd it will be interesting to see how Taylor handles the pressure in his first world title shot and if Baranchyk will handle the red hot atmosphere sure to be created by the Scottish crowd.
The fight could be a close contest and the home support could be crucial to keep Taylor going to the end in a gruelling contest.
🗣️ @JoshTaylorBoxer: "This is the best vs the best!" 🔥
— World Boxing Super Series (@WBSuperSeries) May 17, 2019
The other world title fight will see Puerto Rican, Emmanuel Rodriguez (19-0, 12 KOs) defend his IBF Bantamweight title against Japanese superstar ‘The Monster’ Naoya Inoue (17-0, 15KOs), who will have his WBA regular belt up for grabs.
The press conference on Wednesday would see approximately 80% of the media being made up from Japan showing the popularity of Inoue in his home country.
There has been a bit of animosity between the two camps with a Rodriguez coach pushing Inoue’s father and head coach at the media work out.
This should be the three weight world champion Inoue’s biggest test to date and will be interesting to see how he handles the bigger Rodriguez, who is confident and how Inoue handles fighting away from the home comforts of Japan for the first time.
Rodriguez won his world title when he fought and beat Paul Butler in London last year so has experience of big fights in the UK.
This could be a great fight between two fighters in their prime and a bonus for the Scottish public to see a genuine sporting superstar in Inoue.
World Boxing Super Series will be shown live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the U.S.
— World Boxing Super Series (@WBSuperSeries) May 16, 2019
DAZN Boxing Results: Tevin “American Idol” Farmer & Katie Taylor Win in Philadelphia
By: Ken Hissner
The Liacouras Center in Philadelphia on Friday night was the host event as big time boxing returned to Philadelphia. The main event featured Philly’s Tevin “American” Farmer defending his IBF World Super Featherweight Title against No. 2 ranked Jono “Celtic Warrior” Carroll, of Dublin, Ireland. The promoters were Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing, Lou DiBella’s DiBella Entertainment and J Russell Peltz’s Peltz Boxing Promotions. The event was well attended
IBF World Super Featherweight Champion southpaw Tevin “American Idol” Farmer, 29-4-1 (6), defended his title for the third time in five months by defeating southpaw Jono “Celtic Warrior King Kong” Carroll, 16-1-1 (3), of Dublin, IRE, over 12 exciting rounds.
It was surprising to see the PA commission allowed Carroll to fight with a full beard.
In the first round Farmer gave Carroll a boxing lesson having the jab in an all southpaw match in his face the entire round until the last ten seconds when Carroll landed a combination. In the second round Carroll landed a flurry of punches to the body. Farmer fought Carroll’s round staying inside and getting outworked.
In the third round it was an inside brawl from both fighters. Farmer is quicker and referee Rosato is not warning Carroll’s low flows but from a distance motioning keep them up. The fans love the action. In the fourth round Farmer returned to boxing picking Carroll apart and rocking hin with a right hook to the chin. They are going back and forth inside with Farmer getting the best of it. Farmer ended the round with lightning punches to the body and head of Carroll. Carroll laughed going back to the corner. He is a lovable character.
Photo Credit: DAZN Boxing Twitter Account
In the fifth round Farmer countered Carroll with a left cross on the chin. Carroll is outworking Farmer inside. Farmer knocked out the mouthpiece of Carroll. Farmer is puttin on a show rocking Carroll. Farmer landed a right to the head and a left uppercut to the body. Farmer got warned for a low borderline punch by referee Rosato.
In the sixth round Farmer made Carroll miss a variety of punches and came back with a flurry landing every one. Carroll kept coming. Farmer stayed inside slipping punches and rocking Carroll with a left on the chin. Farmer had Carroll missing several punches at the bell. In the seventh round Farmer has Carroll following him and walking into punches. Carroll is touch as nails but Farmer is much slicker. Farmer landed a double left uppercut on the chin.
In the eighth round both fighters are landing solid punches all inside. Its all body shots from both fighters. Farmer is landing uppercuts at will. The Irish fans are loud at the end of the rounds but not so loud during the round. In the ninth round Carroll is throwing more but Farmer landed the more effective punches. Carroll has the hart of a lion. Farmer has been playing with him but needed to land more punches. Carroll’s got a cut over his right eye. Farmer is a slickster but you never know how the judges see it.
In the ninth round the action is furious. Farmer evades many punches and comes back with solid right hooks on the chin. Carroll is cut over both eyes. Farmer is showing his superior skills. Farmer has Carroll busted up with blood covering his face. Referee Gary Rosato pulled Carroll off as he was trying to land something after the bell in desperation.
In the tenth round Carroll’s glove was untied and his corner took too long to take care of it. Farmer is out there having fun as the Celtic Warrior has him against the ropes being desperate but dangerous. In the eleventh round Farmer will slip head shots but Carroll is landing to the body. Farmer is giving him a boxing lesson but Carroll never stops tring. Carroll landed a good body shot but Farmer has him a bloody mess with head shogts. A right hook rocked Carroll. The corner should have stopped it for Carroll.
In the twelfth and final round Farmer looks to finish it. He landed a right cross to the chin rocking Carroll. Farmer landed a combination to the head of Carroll having him near exhaustion. Carroll kept fighting back like the warrior he is but he is in with a better fighter tonight. The fans enjoyed this one especially the Philly fans.
Scores were 117-110 and 117-111 twice with this writer having it 118-110. The fans loved this one.
IBF World Female and WBA World Female Lightweight Champion and 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist Katie Taylor, 13-0 (6), of Bray, IRE, stopped WBO World Female Lightweight Champion Rose “The Queen” Volante, 14-1 (8), of Sao Paulo, BRZ, in a unification match at 1:40 of the ninth round in a war now having three belts.
In the first round Volante rushed out landing the first punch. A minute later Taylor dropped her with a flurry of punches for an 8 count of referee Benjy Esteves, Jr. In the second round it was a lot of infighting with both taking the lead. Taylor landed a solid right on the chin but Volante came back with a right of her own driving Taylor into Volante’s corner landing a right to the chin at the bell.
In the third round Volante came out pressing Taylor who countered well. The crowd was yelling “come on Katie”. Volante countered a right with a right moving Taylor back several steps. In the fourth round Taylor landed a 3-punch combination to the head and body. Volante has surprised the crowd going punch for punch with the highly respected Taylor. This was another close round. In the fifth round the women are slugging it out to the delight of the fans. Volante looks like she has a bloody nose.
In the sixth and seventh rounds the women fought back and forth on even terms. In the eighth round Taylor rocked Volante with a flurry of solid punches to the head. Taylor landed a good left hook to the body. Volante came back forcing the action with a right on the chin. Taylor came right back with a right on the chin. Taylor landed three punches to the head. The fans were chanting “Katie, Katie”!
In the ninth round Taylor came out landing a pair of left hooks to the body. Volante came back with a right and got countered with a flurry from Taylor staggering Volante. Taylore landed a pair of left hooks to the body. She followed after a clinch with a flurry of punches to the chin. Volante looked like her nose might be broke as referee Esteves waved it off. The Volante corner did not complain. It was a very good fight from both champions.
After eight rounds this writer had Taylor ahead 77-74.
Volante had nothing to be ashamed of for she fought like a champ. Taylor is one of the most colorful boxers in the game. Humble and very approachable to the press.
Middleweight “King” Gabe Rosado, 24-12-1 (14), of Philadelphia, lost a decision to Maciel “Striczu” Sulecki, 28-1 (11), of Warsaw, POL, for the vacant WBO International Title.
In the first round a solid lead right on the chin from Sulecki dropped Rosado who got up on shakey feet. Referee Clark gave him the 8 count. Rosado was able to get through the round. In the second round Sulecki stalked Rosado who countered with a good right on the chin. Both exchanged rights to the chin. Rosado had the Philly crowd yelling and Sulecki had the Polish crowd yelling with red and white flags flying.
Photo Credit: DAZN Boxing Twitter Account
In the third round both fighters to war with Rosado getting the best of it. Sulecki backed him into a corner with a right to the chin. The fans were really into it. Rosado landed another wild right. In the fourth round Sulecki landed a solid right on the chin. Rosado scores with one right to Sulecki’s three but the fans go wild for Rosado. Rosado landed a right to the chin followed by a right uppercut to the chin. Rosado rocked Sulecki with a right having the fans on their feet.
In the fifth round both fighters exchanged solid rights to the chin. Sulecki landed a combination to the chin. Rosado landed a 3-punch combination to the chin. Sulecki landed a hard chopping right on the head. Good and close round. In the sixth round Suleci is pressing the fight but Rosado is outlanding him. Rosado has swelling on his face while Sulecki is unmarked. Rosado has the crowd behind him since his wild introduction.
In the seventh round Rosado came out using his jab effectively. He has the faster hands. Rosado rocked Sulecki with a right cross on the chin. Rosado landed an overhand right on the chin making Sulecki smile. Rosado landed an uppercut while the referee was breaking them. Then at the bell landed one slightly after the bell on the chin.
In the eighth round Sulecki landed a straight right on the chin. Rosado started showboating and Sulecki replied with a right to the chin. Sulecki missing two and got hit with a Rosado right. Rosado landed aright uppercut but got countered with a powerful right dropping Rosado on his back for the 8 count. Rosado ran around the ring with his hands up in the air trying to recover.
In the ninth round the lead was going back and forth. A right from Rosado dropped Sulecki who got up and got dropped again by Rosado!Rosado hurt Sulecki with a right on the side of the head. Rosado landed two solid punches hurting Sulecki who came back with a right to the chin. The fans were on their feet the entire round. Sulecki clinched and too three hard uppercuts from Rosado on the chin. It turned into a out and out brawl. Rosado won the round and the crowd!
Scoring was McKaie and Braslow 95-91 and Carter 95-95 while this writer had it 95-91 Rosado. Rosado can’t catch a break even in this home city. The crowd was stunned with the decision. All of press row but this writer had Sulecki ahead. Demitrius Andrade was in the crowd and told this writer they will fight in June.
Lightweight 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist and WBC No. 1 ranked southpaw Cool Hand” Luke Campbell, 20-2 (16), of Yorkshire, UK, stopped Adrian “Chinito” Young, 26-6-2 (2), of Sinaloa, MEX, at 1:37 of the fifth round.
In the first round it was all Campbell until halfway through. Young became the aggressor the second half with Campbell wining the round. In the third round Campbell countered well but Young kept coming holding his own. In the fourth round Campbell landed a hard straight left on the chin. He followed with a right uppercut to the chin dropping Young for the 8 count. Campbell landed a pair of lefts to the chin just prior to the bell.
In round five Campbell took over landing punch after punch while Young was cut over the left eye. Young landed his one and only punch a good right on the chin. Campbell landed a flurry of punches driving Young into the ropes reeling until referee Dali wisely called a halt. The UK fans went wild!
Debuting Raymond “Savage” Ford, 1-0 (0), of Camden, NJ, made an impressive debut defeating a game Weusi Johnson, 3-11 (0), of Wilmington, DE, over 4 rounds.
In the first round an overhand left from southpaw Ford dropped Johnson for the 8 count by referee Gary Rosato. Johnson held his own surviving the round. Ford signed by Matchroom and a former National GG champion wanted to impress and did in the round. In round two Ford continued with more punches until Johnson came back quite well. Johnson being a late sub but coming off a win.
In the third round Ford and Johnson fought it out well. It was a close round with Ford getting the edge. In the fourth and final round Johnson knowing he needs a knockdown chases Ford. Ford landed a solid left to the chin that Johnson walked into. Ford seemed content to take the decision.
Scores were 39-36 by all 3 judges. This writer had it 40-35.
Welterweight 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist southpaw Danivar Yeleussinov, 6-0 (3), of KAZ, out of Brooklyn, NY, defeated Silverio Ortiz, 37-24 (18), of Yucatan, MEX, over 8 rounds.
In the first round Ortiz landed the first punch a right to the chin. Yeleussinov came right back with a combination to the chin. Then landed a hard right hook to the head. In round two Yeleussinov backed Ortriz against the ropes with a flurry of body shots. Ortiz landed a right to the chin getting off the ropes. Another close round.
In the third round Yeleussinov backed up against the ropes countering Ortiz with jabs and lefts to the chin. Ortiz is walking into punches trying to catch Yeleussinov. In the fourth round Yeleussinov warned for low punch by referee Benjy Esteves, Jr. Yeleussinov landed a hard left uppercut to the chin. Ortiz chased him the entire round.
In the fifth round Yeleussinov was dishing out wicked body punches. Ortiz halfway through the round landed a solid right to the chin. Yeleussinov worked the body for the most part. In the sixth round Yeleussinov would land three punches and Ortiz come back with one. Ortiz got a second warning for hitting behind the head. It was an entire round of in fighting.
In the seventh round Yeleussinov landed a powerful left on the head of a ducking Ortiz knocking him to the canvas but landed a punch while Ortiz was down. Referee Esteves is giving Ortiz all the time he needs to recover. The referee deducted a point from Yeleussinov. It turned into a brawl with inside fighting. Ortiz rocked Yeleussinov with a overhand right to the chin as the bell sounded. Ortiz pounded his chest.
In the eighth and final round Ortiz landed a solid right to the chin. Seconds later Ortiz landed a left hook to the chin. Knowing he is way behind he is looking to pull it out with a knockout but Yeleussinov had too much power for him to overcome.
Scores were 79-71 and 79-72 twice. This writer had it 79-71.
Lightweight Hank Lundy, 29-8-1 (14), of Philadelphia, lost a majority decision to Avery Sparrow, 10-1 (3), of Philadelphia, over 10 rounds of nothing but action! A Peltz Boxing rematch in the making!
In the first Sparrow landed the first hard punch a right on the chin. Luindy landed a hard left hook to the dhin having Sparrow against the ropes. sparrow came back seconds later landing a right on the chin. Sparrow is a much better defensive fighter but got tagged with a right and left hook on the chin seconds before the end of the round.
In the third round Sparrow ducked into a Lundy left hook to the body. Lundy was missing everything but a good jab. Avery landed the final punch of the round a lead right to the chin. In the fourth round Lundy missed with a wild left hook as Sparrow stepped to the side of it. Both are showing respect for one another only throwing jabs. Sparrow landed a right to the chin. Lundy came back missing three punches. It was a close round.
In the fifth round Sparrow landed a left hook to the chin and a right to the body. Lundy continues pressing the fight. He had good body work. In the sixth round Sparrow rocked Lundy with a right to the chin. Lundy works the body when inside while Sparros counters with a right to the chin. Sparrow landed a right to the chin and a left to the body. Both boxers talked to one another at the bell while referee Clark got between them.
In the seventh round Lundy flurried to the body backing Sparrow up. Lundy showed some of his defensive skills making Sparrow miss several punches. Sparrow landed the final punch a right on the chin In the eighth round both take turns pressing ahead. Sparrow landed a triple jab on the chin. Sparrow landed a right uppercut to the chin. Lundy turned southpaw which is his natural.
In the ninth round Lundy missed an overhand right but followed through with a left hook to the body. Sparros landed a lead right to the chin. Lundy landed a left hook to the chin. Sparrow landed a right to the chin. Lundy landing hard body shots. Sparrow landed the final punch a right to the chin.
In the tenth and final round Lundy warned for hitting behind the head by referee Clark. Sparrow missed with two punches but the third landed on the chin. Lundy landed a left hook to the chin. Both were throwing punches at the bell. This one lived up to the build up.
Scores were LaRosa 94-94, Worling 96-92 and Braslow 95-93 as did this writer have it.
John Joe Nevin, 11-0 (4), of Mullingar, IRE, Andres Figueroa, 9-3 (5),
In the first round
D’Mitrius “Big Meech” Ballard, 20-0 (13), of Temple Hills, MD, stopped Victor “Sina” Fonseca, at 2:11 of the fifth round in a scheduled 10.
In the first round after a minute Fonseca landed a pair of rights to the rib cage. Ballard landed a chopping right while inside. Fonseca pushed Ballard against the ropes with a pair of body shots. Ballard landed a right uppercut on the chin at the ten second warning. In the second round both fighters mixed it up well. This is a rematch from when Ballard had stopped Fonseca earlier in their career.
In the third round Ballard landeded a 3-punch combination to the body. He is opening up this round. Again a 3-punch combination to he body and head. Fonseca went back to his corner pretty well beaten but it only takes one punch in this game to come back. In the fourth round Ballard picked up where he left off. There is no quit in Fonseca. Ballard landing hard right uppercuts looking for a knockout.
In the fifth round Fonseca is out landing Ballard until a Ballard low punch hurt Fonseca. Referee Eric Dali is giving him time to re-cooperate. Ballard continues to come forward working the body. A right on the chin and a left hook to the body hurt Fonseca. Fonseca came back with a overhand right on the chin. Referee Dali wisely called a halt after two minutes into the round Fonseca walked back to his corner spitting out his mouthpiece.
DAZN Boxing Preview: Carroll vs. Farmer, Volante vs. Taylor
By: Hans Themistode
Tevin Farmer (28-4-1, 6 KOs) will be looking to defend his IBF Super Featherweight title for the third time when he takes on the undefeated Jono Carroll (16-0-1, 3 KOs). These two will square off at the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia Pennsylvania.
Farmer is the definition of “Philly Tough”. Following a knockout loss at the hands of Jose Pedraza way back in 2012 Farmer hasn’t lost since reeling off an incredible 21 wins in a row. He doesn’t seem to be slowing down either.
In his last contest he easily defeated Francisco Fonseca to keep his streak going. Farmer has long been calling for a showdown with fellow champion, WBA title holder Gervonta Davis. Although that bout has yet to come to fruition there is growing optimism that it will come about soon. If Farmer wants to keep that contest alive, he will first have to get through Jono Carroll. The Ireland born fighter has spent his career fighting in his hometown of Ireland and in the United Kingdom. This will be his first fight on American soil.
For those unfamiliar with the style of Carroll, he is an excellent boxer who comes forward and lets his hands go early and often. He is also slick on the defensive side as well as enjoys making his opponents miss and pay. Farmer coincidentally enough has a very similar style but mostly relies on his defense to get the job done. Both fighters aren’t known for their power as they have a combined 50 fights between them but only 9 knockouts. The game plan for both men will be simple, hit and don’t get hit in return.
At this stage in Farmers career it isn’t just about simply winning fights but it is also about looking as dominant as possible as well. This contest will undoubtedly be the biggest in the career of Carroll as he will be looking to place Farmers world title around his waist. The odds are seemingly stacked against Carroll as not only is Farmer a terrific fighter but he will also have the support of his hometown crowd behind him.
Carrol won’t be the only one on this card looking to upset the odds as WBO Lightweight champion Rose Volante (14-0, 8 KOs) will look to defeat one of women’s boxing rising stars in Katie Taylor (12-0, 5 KOs). The winner of this contest will lay claim to three of the four major titles as not only will Volante’s WBO title be on the line but so will Taylor’s WBA and IBF titles as well. The pressure to perform will rest on both women but more so Taylor as she has been dubbed the next great woman’s boxer.
This amount of pressure is nothing new to Taylor as she has thrived under these circumstances. In 2012 she dominated the Olympic Games and brung home a gold medal in the process. After turning pro in 2016 she quickly won a world title in just her seventh pro fight as she won the WBA belt. In her ninth fight she would add the IBF title to her collection. To say that she is an accomplished boxer would be an understatement. She has all of the necessary tools needed in order to continue to dominate the sport.
With that being said however, she will have a very difficult time with Rose Volante come fight night. The current WBO champion is a skillful fighter who has plenty of power. In her two ring appearances in 2018 she stopped both of her opponents, needing no more than five rounds to get the job done. This won’t be a cake walk for Taylor by any means.
Tevin Farmer and Jono Carroll headline this great card but both Katie Taylor and Rose Volante will absolutely put on a show.
Katie Taylor: “ Everyone Raises Their Game When They Fight Me”
By: Sean Crose
“This could be a monumental year for me, the biggest of my career both amateur and pro,” says IBF and WBA Lightweight Champ Katie Taylor. “I believe that by the end of the year I can look back at being the undisputed Lightweight champion and have had huge fights with Amanda (Serrano) and Cecilia (Braekhus). They want those fights as well, but I have to keep winning and everyone raises their game when they fight me.” Since turning pro just over two years ago, the Irish fighter has become a sensation in women’s boxing, with some considering the 12-0 Taylor to be the best in the sport.
At the moment, however, Taylor must get by the 14-0 Rose Volante, the WBO lightweight champ.“When I sat down with Eddie Hearn a few years ago,” says Taylor, “and talked about turning pro, the one thing we talked about was to fight 3/4 times a year and he’s never let me down, I’m fighting regularly and they are great fights too. I have the chance to win my third World title belt inside two years as a pro, and I’d love to have four fights again this year, but Rose is the only fight in front of me.”
Which means that, although she’s achieved great success under the guidance of Matchroom honcho Hearn, Taylor realizes she can’t sleep on the undefeated Volante. “Rose is a great champion,” says Taylor. “She’s strong and has a big right hand, she’s undefeated too so she’s a proud fighter and she’s chasing the same prize as me. We want each other’s belts and unbeaten records, but I have had a great camp and I am full of confidence. I think I am getting better and I think it will show on the night. This could be a very physical fight and I am prepared for that.”
An interesting aspect of Taylor’s personality is that she appears to be aware of her limitations, as well as her strengths. “I’m at 135 now,” she says, “and I make the weight very comfortably. I could move up to 140lbs but 147? That could be a stretch but maybe I could make it; but anything past that I am not big enough for – so Welterweight would be my maximum. I couldn’t go down from 135, I love food too much!” Ultimately, however, Taylor is supremely confident.
“My speed is going to be key in these big fights,” she says, “and I think that technically I am better than a lot of the other girls as well. I feel I have a great team around me, the best coach in the world in Ross Enamait, I feel so prepared going into every fight. But each one is harder than the last and I am aware of that, but I have a lot of confidence and belief in myself, I really feel that no-one can beat me.”
The Taylor-Volante bout will go down Friday night at Philadelphia’s Liacouras Center. It will be aired live on the DAZN streaming service.
Katie Taylor Looking To Impress On Canelo-Fielding Undercard
By: Sean Crose
The last time 11-0 IBF and WBA world lightweight women’s champion Katie Taylor stepped inside the ring, it was last fall at Boston’s TD Center. Her opponent? The popular and well regarded Cindy Serrano. Some felt Taylor might have trouble on her hands with Serrano. They felt wrong. Taylor won the bout in such lopsided fashion that the Irishwoman herself even appeared frustrated at Serrano’s lack of ability and/or ambition. This Saturday, Taylor will have an new opponent – and a new venue. For Taylor will be facing off against the 22-0-1 Eva Wahlstrom at Madison Square Garden as part of the undercard for the Canelo Alarez- Rocky Fielding super middleweight title throwdown.
Promoter Matchroom Boxing describes Ireland’s Taylor as “an amateur star in the Emerald Isle with an Olympic gold medal added to five World championships and six European golds.” Matchroom adds that Taylor “is hunting unification bouts at 135lbs in 2019, but in unbeaten Finn Wahlstrom, the 32 year old faces the stiffest test of her pro career.” Wahlstrom certainly isn’t any old fighter. Matchroom claims the Helsinki, Finland native “is aiming to become a two-weight World champion…the long-reigning WBC Super-Featherweight champion steps up to Lightweight to achieve that goal on December 15.”
Strangely enough, the two women fought in the amateurs almost fifteen years ago, so there’s a bit of familiarity at play here. “Eva,” says Taylor, “is someone I know very well from our time in the amateurs. I was actually drawn against her in my very first international competition back in 2004 and it seemed like every time I turned up to a major competition after that she was in the draw!.” Taylor clearly respects her undefeated opponent. “She was always a really tough opponent,” says Taylor, “so it’s no surprise that she’s gone on to have a great professional career. I think this fight will really showcase the best that women’s boxing has to offer and I’m really looking forward to it.”
“I have stated for a longest time,” Wahlstrom states, “that I am ready and I want to engage in toughest fights available. This is the ultimate, biggest and toughest fight anywhere and to have it in the legendary Madison Square Garden is a huge honor.” Like Taylor, Wahlstrom remembers the past she has shared with this weekend’s opponent. “I lost to Katie few times in amateur days,” she says, “but I am sure I won her respect anyway. Now in a 10-round pro fight, it will be totally different game with all new avenues to avenge those defeats.”
The fight, which will be aired on the DAZN streaming service – along with the entire card – has the approval of Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn. “This is an amazing opportunity,” he says, “for Katie to fight at MSG. This is by far the toughest fight of her career so far and hugely important moving into 2019.”
“There will,” claims Hearn, “be great Irish support in New York and she (Taylor) adds even more superstar status to this brilliant night of boxing on DAZN.”
WBSS on DAZN Preview: Taylor vs. Martin; Burnett vs. Donaire
By: Ste Rowen
On Saturday night two of Britain’s best take to the ring for the World Boxing Super Series as 140lb number two, seed Josh Taylor of Scotland, fights undefeated American, Ryan Martin; while WBA bantamweight champion, Ryan Burnett of Belfast, steps in with future hall of famer, Nonito Donaire. Watch the fight on DAZN.
Whether watching at home or inside the arena you’re sure to remember at least one thing from Josh Taylor’s World Boxing Super Series quarter-final vs. Ryan Martin, and that’s noise. When the ‘Tartan Tornado’ appears to the crowd for the first time on Saturday, the Scottish crowd will erupt. Covering Martin, in a cacophony of sound he’s never felt before as a boxer.
Photo Credit: World Boxing Super Series Twitter Account
Taylor’s professional-breakout fight was in his five-round dismantling of super-lightweight gatekeeper, Dave Ryan at Meadowbank Sports Arena, in 2016 and since then, five out of Taylor’s six fights have taken place either in Glasgow or his home city of Edinburgh. The fan-base has grown and with it, the anticipation of what the Scottish fans will bring.
Saturday nights venue, SSE Hydro was the base for the 2014 Commonwealth games in Glasgow, where Taylor won gold, so it stands to reason that he’ll be forever linked with the venue,
‘‘The Hydro is now my home. Every time I fight there I’m getting stronger and stronger and the fans are getting bigger and noisier.’’
The ‘Tartan Tornado’s’ last two fight have taken place at the SSE. Five months ago, the Scottish southpaw went head to head with former world champion, Viktor Postol in his most important professional fight to date.
His performance matched the event, as Taylor, now 13-0 (11KOs) battled through 12 exhausting rounds, dropping the Ukrainian in the 11th, to add another notch to his record and emerge as arguably, the biggest threat outside of the current 140lb world champions,
‘‘My style is based on hand speed and timing. I can punch hard as well…I know if I’m hitting you, I’m putting you down or hurting you. I don’t think there’s anybody that boxes the way I box.’’
‘‘I’ve seen every type of style, every type of fighting you can imagine… My ambition is to move forward, win this tournament and become world champion.’’
Before entering the WBSS, Taylor was making his way through the WBC rankings to eventually face one of the organisation’s belt holders, Jose Ramirez or already confirmed semi-finalist, Regis Prograis. If he wins on Saturday though, he’ll instead face the recently crowned IBF champion, Ivan Baranchyk for that title and a place in the final to fight either Kiryl Relikh or Prograis.
Ryan ‘Blue Chip’ Martin has fluctuated between lightweight and super-lightweight throughout his pro career. Currently 22-0 (12KOs) and training out of Big Bear under the tutelage of Abel Sanchez, Martin has won minor lightweight titles as an amateur and as a professional.
Towards the end of last year, he picked up the 135lb WBA Inter-Continental strap with a split decision victory over Francisco Rojo; as well as already being the owner of the WBC ‘Americas’ lightweight belt. However, his two fights this year came at the weight class above including a shut-out points victory over Briedis Prescott in May.
Though 22 bouts in, his professional record has been steady in its progress; Martin’s not the type of man who takes any opponent lightly,
‘‘I know Josh Taylor’s a very good boxer, I’m the most athletic, I have the most speed and that’s gonna make the most difference throughout the tournament.’’
‘‘I’ve heard the crowd in Scotland is gonna be a very different atmosphere than I’ve ever been in but I’m gonna soak it all in.’’
Although ‘Blue Chip’ won’t have fought in an atmosphere as raucous as Saturday’s is expected to be, he’s no stranger to performing on the big stage having already performed at venues such as, the StubHub Center in LA, Vegas’s T-Mobile Arena and, probably the most famous boxing venue of all, Madison Square Garden,
‘‘I’m a boxer-puncher. I love to entertain, I love to excite people…Nobody wants to see a boring fighter.’’
‘‘As fighter’s every time we step in the ring we’re risking something so why not risk it on the big stage.
As mentioned earlier, the man to emerge victorious this weekend will go on to face Ivan Baranchyk in the semi-finals, who last week scored a 7th round stoppage victory over Anthony Yigit.
Ryan Burnett vs. Nonito Donaire
The fourth and final bantamweight quarter-final sees WBA ‘Super’ champion, Ryan Burnett step into the ring with ‘The Filipino Flash’, Nonito Donaire. The winner will progress to the semis to fight WBO champion, Zolani Tete.
No one can say the 26-year-old Ryan Burnett hasn’t earned his place at the top table of 118lb boxers. The Belfast man has, on numerous occasions, been given reasons to quit boxing, his story, which he outlines in another brilliantly put together Super Series documentary here; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uu4AaO7UGlc isn’t your regular hard knocks tale.
Photo Credit: World Boxing Super Series Twitter Account
He’s overcome neurological issues that he was told were career-ending and been homeless; all before even catching his break in the sport.
‘‘I’ve got a hunger that I know no one in there has.’’
‘‘For a year and a half, we learnt how the brain worked and we started pursuing it to prove that my health wasn’t in any danger…I just always had that mad belief that I am meant to be a world champion.’’
Since around 2014, Burnett has been trained by Adam Booth and since then, established a record of 19-0 (9KOs) which, most significantly, includes becoming a world champion in 2017, for the first time via a completely dominant decision victory over Lee Haskins, and then immediately unifying the WBA and IBF championships with a tough but unanimous points win over Zhanat Zhakiyanov.
Before the WBSS second season fighters was announced, Burnett decided to drop the IBF strap, therefore avoiding a fight with WBSS semi-finalist, and now IBF champion, Emmanuel Rodriguez. Instead, Ryan’s one bout so far in 2018 was a fairly routine victory over Venezuelan, Yonfrez Parejo on the undercard of Anthony Joshua vs. Joseph Parker.
Like all of the top seeds across the Super Series, Burnett recognises the pressure on his shoulders, especially when he’s going up against the power that his Filipino foe is known for,
‘‘I don’t need to be nasty to people, I’m able to switch it like a light switch and I turn into a different person…I picked Nonito because, the better the fighter, the better I become.’’
‘‘We all dream of these moments of fighting the best and becoming the best in the world and the World Boxing Super Series are making that come true.’’
Currently 38-5 (24KOs), Nonito Donaire’s, last fight was also his latest defeat as ‘The Filipino Flash’ was beaten by Burnett’s fellow Northern Irishman, Carl Frampton.
Speaking at the press conference on Wednesday, the four-weight world champion was asked about any similarities between the two men,
‘‘They (Frampton & Burnett) are similar because they’ve both got big balls. They’re there to fight and that’s something that I like… I’m just grateful to be in the ring with a great man.’’
Nonito hasn’t fought at bantamweight since 2011 when he scored a unanimous decision over, a then 35-0-2, Omar Narvaez. That night in New York he became a two-weight world champion, picking up the WBC & WBO straps as well as improving his own record to 27-1.
He then shifted his sights to super-bantam and eventually the featherweight division where he accomplished world honours in both, but by his own admission, he didn’t feel all together comfortable fighting at the 126lb limit, and the tournament has given him the opportunity to add one more achievement to his already impressive accolades.
‘‘I’ve always come to fight the best out there…I’ve achieved pretty much everything in boxing…The only thing I haven’t done in boxing is become the undisputed champion, and that’s the one thing that’s given me this fire.’’
It’s beneficial for both sides as well though as Donaire’s legendary status adds an extra bit of flavour to an already appetising class of fighters that has been whittled down to Naoya Inoue, Emmanuel Rodriguez and Zolani Tete.
‘‘This is a moment for me to rise. When one is driven to a point, there’s only one way to go and that’s going up and that’s rising beyond what I’m capable of.’’
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DAZN Undercard Results: Taylor Dominates Serrano
By: Sean Crose
DAZNs main undercardcard from Boston’s TD Garden arena on Saturday began with England’s 24-0 Kid Galahad making his US debut against fellow featherweight, Toka Kahn Clary; 25-1, of Rhode Island, in a scheduled 12 round affair.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
The first portion of the bout was surprising in that Clary, trained by Freddie Roach, was landing more effectively than his European adversary. Perhaps even stranger, Galahad never seemed to be able to get into a rhythm with the counter punching southpaw. Galad gained steam at the end, though perhaps not enough to warrant the UD win he was rewarded with.
Next up, the 26-4-1 Tevin Farmer defended his junior lightweight title against the 22-2 James Tennyson in a scheduled 12 round affair. Farmer looked like he was having a hard time with Tennyson’s pressure but then dropped his man with a body blow in the fourth. Tennyson beat the count but it was a surprising turn from Farmer, a man not known for power punching.
Yet Farmer continued to surprise by stopping his man with yet another body shot the following round.
Afterwards, Katie Taylor entered the ring to the loud jubilation of the many Irish fans in the crowd. Taylor, 10-0 was then set to face off against the 27-5-3 Cindy Serrano in a 10 round bout for her lightweight titles.
Taylor easily dominated the first two rounds with sound footwork and effective aggression. Things essentially stayed the same through to the midpoint of the fight. Serrano did so little that by the 7th Taylor literally motioned her forward. Later in the round, Serrano actually threw punches at air, inches away from a relatively stationary target. it was a truly dreadful affair. Taylor couldn’t finish Serrano…and Serrano simply refused to fight.
Taylor walked out with a UD win after the bell mercifully sounded to end the final round.
Katie Taylor: “I Am Loving The Pro Game”
By: Sean Crose
“I’m so excited about this fight. The fact it’s in Boston means it’s going to be like a home from home for me in there with all the Irish support.” These words, which come from the mouth of Ireland’s Katie Taylor, the women’s WBA and IBF lightweight titlist, make one thing clear – she’s looking forward to facing the 27-5-3 Cindy Serrano at Boston’s TD Center Saturday night on the undercard of the Demtrius Andrade – Walter Kautondokwa middleweight title bout. This weekend will mark the 10-0 Taylor’s third fight stateside and will be aired live via DAZN streaming service.
Photo Credit: Katie Taylor Twitter Account
Taylor is quick to credit promoter Eddie Hearn with a good portion of her success. “Eddie was as excited as me about the future,” she says, “and now I have the chance to be a part of the new venture with DAZN too which is great for me.” The former Olympic Gold medalist isn’t one to rest upon her laurels. “I am developing a fan base in the US as well as back home in Ireland and the UK,” she claims. “It’s such an exciting time for me and I am loving the pro game.”
Things have clearly gone well for Taylor since she turned pro back in 2016. “I love fighting in the US and this is a really big fight with a big name on a huge platform in Boston and on DAZN,” she says. “These are the kinds of fights that I am in the sport for.” Fighting in Boston, with its huge Irish American population, will unquestionably give the 32-year-old a boost.
As Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing states: “Katie Taylor believes another show-stealing performance in her WBA and IBF World Lightweight title defense against Cindy Serrano at the TD
Garden on Saturday night, live on DAZN can make her become a household name in Boston.”
Things haven’t always been easy on Taylor. A documentary, “Katie” details the fighter’s struggles both in the ring and with her family. With that in mind, the fighter has been able to forge herself a perfect record in the nearly two years since turning pro and has no intention of letting up as she watches her star begin to rise. Serrano, however, clearly has other plans. The Brooklyn based fighter hasn’t lost since 2012. She’s also the sister of noted champion Amanda Serrano, owner of the WBO women’s super-lightweight title.